This morning as I was reading through John 14 the Lord grabbed my attention with these words “in my name” (14). After a quick word study, I inserted a different definition for the words in and name. The phrase then read “within my nature.”
This substitution changed my perspective. How many times in prayer do I make requests of God based on His nature? According to Scripture, God’s nature is “compassionate, and gracious . . . slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness . . . and forgiving” (Exodus 34:6-7; Jonah 4:2; Nehemiah 9:17 and Psalm 145:8). These attributes of God are worth praying for. When I ask God to pour His attributes into my corrupt nature, I am asking Him to transform my life into Christ’s likeness. To be formed in the image of God is to allow the Holy Spirit to shape Christ’s perfect qualities into my imperfect life and being. When I pray for others I should be asking God to make them in Christ’s likeness through the power of the Holy Spirit, what I pray Jesus will form in my life through the power of the Holy Spirit. These are the attributes of holy God that I should pray will fill the lives of those around me.
Imagine how dramatically lives will change if we are praying for people to be formed in the nature and likeness of God the Father, as demonstrated by God the Son through the power of God the Spirit? People who are unfaithful will be faithful. Those who have a quick temper will be slow to anger. Friends who are bitter and discontented will find forgiveness. Families will know how to love as Christ loves.
“You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it” (John 14:14). By praying in Christ’s name we are calling on the Holy Spirit to transform and regenerate the world one life at a time.
Denise Larson Cooper has a passion for Christ and sharing His Word. A wife and mother of two daughters, Denise currently works as a gymnastic coach.
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Godnesia: Keeping God in Mind Each Day http://amzn.to/2GSquOD
Ordinary Days With an Extraordinary Savior – http://amzn.to/2mFGASB
Life Is a Metaphor: Recognizing God in the Everyday – http://amzn.to/2De1rU2