Pray in Jesus’ Name

John 16: 23b-28
Acts 18: 23-28 / Psa 47

I tell you, anything you ask from the Father He will grant in my name.
(John 16:23)

To life’s trials we’re not exempted
Just because His mercy we claim;
But all evils can be prevented
By trust in the power of His Name.

Jesus told His disciples: “In all truth I tell you, anything you ask from the Father He will grant in my name. Until now you have not asked anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and so your joy will be complete. I have been telling you these things in veiled language. The hour is coming when I shall no longer speak to you in veiled language but tell you about the Father in plain words. When that day comes you will ask in my name; and I do not say that I shall pray to the Father for you, because the Father Himself loves you for loving me, and believing that I came from God. I came from the Father and have come into the world and now I am leaving the world to go to the Father.” (John 16:23b-28)

Reflection

In many instances, Jesus had always given this assurance to His followers, that whatever they asked from the Father in His name would be granted. Early on He had told them, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you… If you then, who are wicked, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good things to those who ask Him” (Mt.7:7,11). He only asked of them to “Seek God’s kingdom, and all these things will be given you besides. Do not be afraid any longer, little flock, for the Father is pleased to give you the kingdom.” (Lk.12:31-32)

Ask and you will receive, and so your joy will be complete.” Jesus does not want us to ask for things of this world, but for what is really essential, what our spirit needs that will make our joy complete. He wants us to ask for the gifts of the Holy Spirit, the tools that we need to find our way to His kingdom. These are wisdom, understanding, fortitude, discernment, patience, faith and tongues. (Understanding includes interpretation of tongues.) I believe the gift of faith is the most powerful, because through this gift we are able to evangelilze, as in the case of St. Paul and all the saints who spread God’s Word throughout the world.

When we have realized the importance of asking for the “right things” from the Father, we are assured by the words of Jesus that we have complete access to God in heaven. This is because it is in communion with Jesus, the Son that we present our petitions. “In all truth I tell you, anything you ask from the Father He will grant in my name.” Again it is worth mentioning here that we must always pray to Jesus to increase our faith, because it is in complete faith in the power of His Name that our petitions will be answered. Recall the time when St. Peter employed his faith in the healing of the crippled beggar. He simply told him, “I have neither silver nor gold, but what I do have I give to you: in the name of Jesus Christ the Nazorean, rise and walk.” Then, taking him up by the hand, he raised him up, and his feet and ankles suddenly became strong, and he even jumped up praising God (Acts 3:6-8).

Those who belong to this world (the worldly) refuse to concern themselves with the next life beyond this temporal one. Only those who are not in fellowship with this world but belong to Christ are the ones who worship the Name of our Lord because “it is by His Name that we are saved.” It is by His Name that we have found true joy and peace that this modern world, with all its “hyper” technology can never give.

Lord Jesus, we are reminded in today’s Gospel that as long as we abide in You, whatever we ask the Father will be granted. It is not for this world that we live, dear God, but for the hope of spending eternity in Your kingdom. Amen.

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