That day will always be etched in my mind. I was praying at a missionary training center with a dear friend concerning the moving forward of God’s Kingdom through our children’s lives. Our praying was simple, yet very passionate and profound. Our hearts were broken and our desires were the same — “take our children and use them for Your glory, Lord.” Of course, the results of these prayers were yet to be realized, but we both understood the seriousness of the moment. Where would these prayers take our children? What would this mean regarding the focus of their particular mission involvement? The Lord knew the future, and we could only watch and wait to see how these prayers would be answered in and through our children’s lives.
That was ten plus years ago, and I must say—God has certainly answered beyond my expectations. He has sent my children to many points around the world to join Him in His mission. They have had the privilege to be with Him in His work of moving His Kingdom forward. What a joy to watch.
In Matthew 6:9-10 Jesus teaches His followers to pray toward the coming of His Kingdom and the accomplishment of His will on earth. This happens as people experience the rule and reign of Christ when they trust Him to be their Lord and Savior. This also continues to take place in believers as they grow in Christ. Jesus modeled this kind of Kingdom focused praying in John 17.
Over the next few pages wewill examine some of the missional prayer patterns found in John 17. May we be challenged, encouraged and better equipped to pray toward the coming of the Kingdom as a result of this study.
John 17—A brief intro
Jesus has just finished the second part of his farewell discourse in John chapter 16.1 His crucifixion and departure was something that his followers did not fully grasp, and from their earthly perspective, probably did not want to hear about or experience. Jesus assured them of His abiding presence, peace and victory. He also instructed them concerning promises relating to praying in His name (see John 16: 16-33).