"Do not be discouraged by the difficulty of keeping your focus on Me. I know your heart's desire... Don't let feelings of failure weigh you down. I am delighted by your deep desire to walk closely with Me... I am pleased each time you initiate communication with Me. I notice the progress you have made...don't be alarmed or surprised. You live in a world that's been rigged to distract you." (320)
As a child I would most often picture Jesus as the baby in a manger, the miracle working Savior or as a stern Clear-the-Temple Ultimate Authority Figure! Of those three, it was the Ultimate Authority Figure that would frighten me. I was concerned that He would only see all kinds of defects in my life, pointing to various failures or inherent flaws. Over the years that perspective modified some, but even into adulthood, I still wrestled with that underlying fear that I was disappointing Him in some way.
Then, as a mother of two teenage sons, who would characteristically bounce between being spiritually passionate or spiritually passive, in an effort to 'own' their own spiritual journey, I would often pray for His mercy to cover them. One day it hit me... Jesus is doing the same! For them! For me! He is mercifully covering us with intercessory prayers!
The devo scripture passage tells us, Jesus understands and "intercedes for us." (Hebrews 4:34) One of my favorite definitions for intercession is "to pray the prayer that another is yet unable to pray for themselves."
When I think that Jesus is praying the perfect prayer for me, even if I am yet unaware or unable to pray it for myself, that powerfully encourages me. He's not judging me...He is praying earnestly for me even delighting in me! What a thought! He really "gets it" when it comes to understanding and interceding for me!
I choose to agree with the prayer Jesus is praying for me, today!
Incidentally, my boys are now grown, married to precious wives who love Jesus and are raising children who have spiritually tender, loving hearts. They now stand, with Jesus, the great Intercessor, interceding for their own children!
Grateful for an Interceding Savior...dmc