One of the most loving things we can do for each other is to pray for each other–to ask our Heavenly Father to act powerfully in the midst of our sorrows and tears, our pain and our fears. Oftentimes we mean well and end up saying something like, “I’ll be sure to pray for you.” And all too often..we simply forget to pray. Better yet is when we pray right then and there for our brother or sister!
Don’t you feel loved and cared for when you know that your friends are praying for you?!
But there’s something even greater. SomeOne greater! Someone who never stops praying for God’s children, for you, for me. Hebrews 7:25 says that Jesus prayed for you today, yesterday, and will pray for you tomorrow. Even when you and I forget to pray for each other, Jesus doesn’t forget. Even when you and I pray for each other once or twice or even for a few weeks, Jesus never stops praying for us! Let these words sink into your soul, let them be an anchor for your drifting heart:
Consequently, [Jesus] is able to save to the uttermostthose who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them.–Hebrews 7:25
For the past year I’ve been regularly preaching this implication of the gospel to my heart–because Jesus died the death that I deserved I can draw near to God. Because on the cross Jesus was forsaken by God, I’ve been adopted by God and can talk to him like as my Father. As the final sacrifice, Jesus took God’s wrath and I got God’s mercy. As the Great, Resurrected and Exalted High Priest, Jesus stands between me and God and intercedes for me…when I sin, when I doubt God’s promises. Today! Yesterday! Tomorrow! Forever!
So when you tell someone you’ll be praying for them and even after you do pray for them, remind them “And don’t forget, Jesus has been praying for you, he is praying for you, and he will be praying for you!”
“Jesus is our master in prayer; he is also our companion in prayer. He says to us, ‘I’ll pray for you …’ — and does it. His promise to pray for us is not lost or overlooked in a vast heavenly clutter of petitions and intercessions, confessions and thanksgivings, ascending in a cloud of incense to his altar. It defeats our imagination to understand how this takes place, but we have it on good authority that it does.
Jesus prays. He is praying for us right now. He was praying for us yesterday. He will be praying for us tonight as we sleep and tomorrow morning as we wake up. Jesus praying for us is a current event.
You don’t think you know how to pray? Yes, there is much to learn; meanwhile Jesus is praying for you. You don’t feel like praying? Relax, feelings come and go; meanwhile Jesus is praying for you. You don’t have time to pray? Jesus doesn’t mind waiting; meanwhile he has plenty of time to pray for you.”
—Eugene Peterson, Tell It Slant: A Conversation on the Language of Jesus in His Stories and Prayers (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2008), 163-64