Pray Hard Prayers

Do you pray for yourself? I mean besides the “Lord, help me not to kill them” or “Lord, show me what to do” prayers. Do you spend time, on a regular basis praying to be glorified? Yes, I just said that: praying to be glorified! Trust me, it’s not the kind of glorified you’re thinking. In John 17:1, Jesus prays, “Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you…” Although that sounds like a prayer only Jesus could pray, it’s not. It’s a prayer we should all pray. The word “glorify” means to invest with glory. Here we see Jesus, opening his heart to the Father and asking Him to invest His glory. He didn’t ask for this out of selfish motive or ambition, he asked for God to glorify him so “that they know you, the only true God” (John 17:3).

So, not only does he pray for himself to be glorified, he also prays for himself first, before he prays for anyone else. Then, in the rest of John 17, he prays for his disciples (the ones that were closest to him) and last, all believers. Since there is always method to his madness, I’ve come to recognize that there is a lot to be learned from his intentionality. The only thing we can come to expect from Jesus is the unexpected. He never does anything they way we think he should, so when the most humble man on the face of the earth prays to be glorified, it should be no surprise.

Jesus came to break all the rules and every ounce of bondage attached to them. What would happen if we prayed the same way he did? What if we prayed for ourselves before we prayed for others? I can pray for other people, but that’s not the answer. The only person I can change is me. So why not start there? These are not easy prayers, they are very difficult. They sound like this:

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Aren’t you so thankful that Jesus, the rule breaker is also Jesus, the bondage breaker? He desires to invest His glory in the most unconventional and uncomfortable ways.

One of the most humbling things we can do is pray for ourselves. It causes us to look deep inside our hearts and ask , “Lord, what do you need to do inside of here in order to draw me closer to you and others?”

I ask this question daily and He’s never answered back, “nothing.”

Pray for yourself, that any ounce of goodness would be glorified so that others may know Him. If we’ll lose ourselves a little everyday, we’ll find ourselves.