The Best Prayer Ever
The most significant prayer ever prayed may well be the prayer of Jesus, found in John 17. There he prays for his immediate disciples, his later disciples and for the world. And it is the most significant prayer ever because he asks God for the most significant thing ever. He asks that we might have and experience and pass on to others eternal life or “the life of the age to come.” More accurately, he prays that God will be glorified for sending Christ with authority to give this life “to all those you have given him” (17:2).
Now, when Ellen Degeneres gives every person in her audience a television they go crazy over her. Their faces beam with pleasure. They jump up and down and clap their hands. They scream when she calls them to the platform to stand next to her. They literally vibrate with pleasure. How much more should we “glorify” the Son and the Father who give us the life of the age to come? And this life is the real experience of knowing God and the transforming affect that has on us. “This is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent” (17:3). Through faith in Christ we begin to experience the life that we will experience fully in heaven. We begin to align with truth. We begin to live righteously. We begin to experience the joy and peace that will be complete, full, and continuous in heaven.
The transformation of our lives and the experience of the life to come are as deep as our experience of knowing God. The more we “see” him the more we will be like him (see 1 John 5:2). This becomes a practical choice of walking with Christ by spending time daily in his Word, practicing obedience, prayer, fellowship with those who love and live for God, learning to be refined by various trials, and so on. It is the life of heaven begun now. It is the best prayer ever.