“If you remain in Me and My words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to My Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be My disciples.” John 15:7-8
Christmas – It’s the most wonderful time of the year…the time we set aside to celebrate the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. It’s the season of decorating, parties, and giving gifts. Kids everywhere are making their Christmas wish lists, mailing letters to the North Pole, and lining up to sit in Santa’s lap to tell him what they want for Christmas.
So often, we treat God like He is Santa Clause. We bow our heads in prayer, and read off our wish lists of what we want Him to do for us. In John 15:7, the Bible says that if we remain in Christ, whatever we ask of Him will be done. This verse is easily misinterpreted and misused. It does not mean that God will give us anything we ask for. Rather, it means that God will give us anything we ask for that brings Him glory.
Notice Christ’s words in the next verse, John 15:8. Jesus says, “This is to My Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be My disciples.” Jesus attaches what we ask for in prayer with bearing fruit that shows we are His followers…and this brings His Father glory. Jesus is assuming that the prayers of His disciples will be requests that bear eternal fruit. He is not promising to answer every selfish wish, but rather to give us everything we need to bring glory to His Father.
This truth should change the way that we pray. No longer is it acceptable to bring a list of wants in prayer and then slap, “In Jesus’ Name” on the end and expect Him to grant our wishes. God is not Santa Clause. Yes, we should bring all of our cares, concerns, burdens, hopes, and dreams to Him. But we should also ask Him to align our desires with His desires for us. We should hold our requests with an open hand, trusting that His “no” is always for our good.
As Christians, our prayers should be saturated with requests that bring God glory through our lives. When we begin to pray this way, Jesus has promised that He will give us everything we need. This is what it means to pray in Jesus’ name.
Dear God, Thank You for this promise in John 15 that You will answer my prayers and use my life for Your glory. I want to bear fruit that points people to You. Please help me to truly pray in Jesus’ name so that my life proves that I am His disciple.
In Jesus” Name, Amen.