Devotion: Monday, June 3, 2019

Welcome to “Word from the Center” MONDAY, a devotional word from the Center of our faith, Jesus Christ, with reflections from His Word. I’m Gregory Seltz. Today’s reading is from John 17:20–21, where Jesus says,   

20 “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, 21 that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me.”


John 17 is called the High Priestly Prayer of Jesus because it specifically demonstrates His commitment to intercede for His disciples and His Church. Isn’t that amazing? Not only is Jesus the world’s Savior, He is also intimately concerned for those who believe in Him and follow Him. As a believer, when you realize that you have a Savior who even intercedes for you before the throne of God the Father, that should give you tremendous confidence in living your life boldly in His name each day here on earth. It’s a great comfort to know that the one who lived, died, and rose again for you and me, has even got you on His mind and in His prayers. Wow!

Confidence to live boldly in this world is a tremendous blessing. It’s important to know that such confidence doesn’t come from our own wisdom or strength. It comes from God’s Word, His presence in our lives, and the knowledge that we really matter to Him. And we do! Jesus even has us in His prayers. The writer of the book of Hebrews confirms that in chapter 7 where he says, 24 “Because Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood. 25 Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them” (see also Romans 8:34). When the right person has you on His mind, that makes all the difference in life, doesn’t it?

I recently learned this lesson here in Washington D.C. In February, we had a big gathering of our educational leaders here in the Capitol. My task was to get well-known, dynamic D.C. speakers for our conference. One of those speakers was to be Dr. Ben Carson. I can’t tell you how difficult it was to make a connection with his office. I called. I emailed. I left messages. But, to no avail. At a meeting with one of our Lutheran Congressmen, Rep. John Shimkus, he pulled me aside and said, “Greg, next time you need to talk to someone like Ben Carson, just give my office a call. We’ll help set that up for you.” I also met another person later that week, John Gibbs, who just happened to be on Dr. Carson’s staff. Suddenly, access wasn’t so difficult. Suddenly, where there was previously anxiety, there was now confidence that I could accomplish the work that was before me. It gives one confidence to know who to talk to and who can talk for you in the things that matter most.

That’s the lesson of John 17. When it comes to what ultimately matters, namely our relationship with God, we know who to talk to and who talks for us, Jesus our Savior. With our salvation already accomplished by His effort, and with our lives empowered by His Word and His prayerful concern, we can have confidence to face the challenges we encounter each day. 

PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, what a joy it is to know that You have us always in Your thoughts and Your prayers. Give us confidence to meet the challenges of the day because of all that You have done for us. AMEN.