“Pray for Your Church” Excerpt

Day 1
Lord, Be Glorified in Your Church
John 17:1-5

Jesus spoke these things, looked up to heaven and said:

Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son so that the Son may glorify You,
2 for You gave Him authority over all flesh;  so He may give eternal life to all You have given Him.
3 This is eternal life: that they may know You, the only true God, and the One You have sent—Jesus Christ.
4 I have glorified You on the earth by completing the work You gave Me to do.
5 Now, Father, glorify Me in Your presence with that glory I had with You before the world existed.

 The night before His crucifixion Jesus prays for Himself, his disciples and the church that will be established after the coming of the Holy Spirit. John 17 is the record of this prayer, revealing this most personal moment between Him and His Father. This is where we begin, praying for the church as Jesus prayed for the church.

The first section of His prayer is dominated by the word “glorify.” To glorify God is to make Him known or to cause others to acknowledge the dignity and worth of God. Jesus says, “Glorify Your Son so that the Son may glorify You.” This prayer is unique to Jesus. We can’t pray this because we are not worthy of glory, but Jesus is God in the flesh and He is worthy to be glorified. When the Father brings glory to Jesus He is also bringing glory to Himself.

The prayer of the believer is for the church to bring glory to both Jesus and the Father. We want to cause Him to become well known. We want the world, our neighbors, friends and enemies to acknowledge the Lord. This is how He is glorified.

This isn’t about mere worship, though that is part of it. It is about making Him known in such a way that people are drawn to Him, not to us.

Jesus came, incarnate, surrendering His place and sacrificing His life to reveal the Father so that the world would be drawn to the Father. His intent was not judgment but revelation leading to salvation resulting in glorification. On this last night it meant complete surrender and sacrifice of self. It still means that. For God to be glorified we must surrender and sacrifice all.

When you pray for God to be glorified in your church, you must concurrently surrender yourself. You are giving God total control of your life and your church, your possessions and your preferences. You are inviting Him to become incarnate in you as Jesus was incarnate, God in flesh. You want Him to be seen and are willing to go anywhere, do anything for Him to be made known. You do this so that others will see Him and follow Him.

This isn’t a rote prayer. This isn’t a ritual prayer. This isn’t a thoughtless prayer. This is surrender.

Pray:
Lord, do whatever You need to do in me and in my church to bring Yourself glory. I surrender everything to You. Your glory is more important than my comfort, my schedule, my possessions, or my life. To You be glory in the church.

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