It takes wisdom to have a good family, and it takes understanding to make it strong.
Nothing great comes without great effort. Great effort must be made in understanding others if your goal is to have peaceful relationships, a loving family, or shalom. Ministry is loving and even studying people so as to better care for and serve them. We bring awareness to one another in order to strengthen our intentionality. That, I believe, is the point and power of awareness. Once you recognize a pattern or habit, you can then be more intentional in addressing and healing the brokeness that will now be clearly visible to you. Here lies the immense value of being that mirror to each other. “Hey, did you notice that whenever you talk about ‘So and So’, that your demeanor changes and you show anger?” If someone is a good enough friend to detect, as well as challenge us in this way, we should embrace it! Thank you! Now I can be much more intentional in growing in this area you brought awareness to. “Also, did you know you have basil in your teeth?” Thank you!
“Father, I want the ones you’ve given me to be with me where I am. I want them to see my glory, the glory which you’ve given me, because you loved me before the foundation of the world.”
This chapter gives us the longest and most intimate prayer by Jesus we have recorded for us. For some reason, this chapter in particular always hearkens me to the last verse of John’s gospel where he states that if everything Jesus did was written down, the world could not hold the amount of books that would be required for this monumental task. Therefore, the tiny fraction of what Jesus did that is contained in these canonical gospel accounts is of the highest importance to us. It deserves our utmost attention. And in all four accounts, we have just one personal prayer of any considerable length by Jesus to His Father. So every part of it is of vital importance.
What then did He pray for?
Throughout the prayer He prays that we experience God’s love and Presence. Jesus desires that we be where He is-in the loving and constant Presence of YHWH. That is to say, the manifest Presence of God. Yes, He is omnipresent, but Jesus wants us to live into the divine, comforting Presence by experiencing it, acknowledging it. That is the manifest Presence as opposed to the mere omnipresence. It is not just the cold fact that God is everywhere, but rather He is for us, loving us at every moment, ready to walk with you every moment. This is where Jesus lived while on earth and it is where He desires that we would live.
I like how Greg Boyd reminds himself of this by often proclaiming, “I have never been more loved than I am right now at this very moment.” And you can say that at any given moment of your life. God is for you right now.
Jesus says to each of us, “I want you to be with Me. I desire for us to experience life together in the Divine Embrace.” How comforting is that? There is no better place to be. God’s part is just being there, always ready and willing to walk with us through any and all nuances of our life. Our part is simply to acknowledge it and live into what He is offering every moment.