During Lent I focused upon the Seven Last Sayings by Christ on the Cross. Since then I have read The Kneeling Christian by An Unknown Christian. The author writes that in Jesus’ last discourse with His disciples He informs them that they can ask anything in prayer and it will not only be heard but it will be answered. The unknown writer goes on to say that although many of us have spent considerable time reflecting upon Jesus’ seven last sayings from the cross, most of us have never spent one hour meditating upon our Savior’s sevenfold invitation to pray. I am challenged to refute this statement by taking time to personally meditate upon these words of Jesus. My Reader, I invite you to join me in taking a closer look at these seven scriptures. Reflect upon these words of Jesus and accept the truths of these words for yourself.
Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me
will do the works I have been doing,
and they will do even greater things than these,
because I am going to the Father.
And I will do whatever you ask in my name,
so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
You may ask me for anything in my name,
and I will do it.
If you remain in me and my words remain in you,
ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.
This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit,
showing yourselves to be my disciples.
You did not choose me,
but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go
and bear fruit—fruit that will last—
and so that whatever you ask in my name
the Father will give you.
In that day you will no longer ask me anything.
Very truly I tell you, my Father will give you
whatever you ask in my name.
Until now you have not asked for anything in my name.
Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.
In that day you will ask in my name.
I am not saying that I will ask the Father on your behalf.
No, the Father himself loves you
because you have loved me and have believed
that I came from God.
John 16:26-27 (plain print is mine)
After spending time studying these words spoken by Jesus to His disciples, there are three things I want to remember. First, my prayers are to be made in the name of Jesus. That does not just mean that I simply include the phrase “in the name of Jesus” at the end of my conversation with God. It denotes that I pray in the nature and character of Jesus. It is as if my prayer is what Jesus would pray. Secondly, the result of my request will glorify God. I’m not praying to make things easy for myself or others for whom I intercede, nor am I praying to honor myself. It is all about the Lord! Thirdly, Jesus says that He will “do it” but He does not say how or when. Sometimes the best way for the Lord to answer my request is to say no or wait. God know best!
One final quote from The Kneeling Christian says, “God is greater than His promises and is more willing to hear than we are to pray.’” My Reader, Jesus presented this sevenfold invitation to pray to His disciples over 2000 years ago. However, He is still extending this invitation to you and me today. I encourage you to let these words have an impact upon your prayer life. The Lord is waiting to hear your voice.