Today this statement made by Jesus struck me:
"And I will pray to the Father, and he will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever . . ." (John 14:16).
It was the first part of the verse that caught my attention. Here was Jesus, the Son of God, and very God himself (John 1:1; 20:28), the one who abides in perfect, seamless intimacy with the Father (John 14:9-10). And yet, evidently there is enough distinction in Persons between Father, Son, and Holy Spirit that Jesus "prays" to the Father. I would have thought prayer among the Trinitarian persons unnecessary: What need is there for the activity of petition and request within a tight community of oneness in which each thinks the other's thoughts and loves without measure?
I was taking my morning prayer walk but didn't feel like praying. Praying is sometimes like breathing but sometimes work, and today it was the latter. After about a half-mile, I just thought to myself: "I won't pray today; I'll just think. After all, God knows all things, He knows my heart and discerns my thoughts from afar."
It was then that the Spirit brought to mind this portion of John 14:16: "I will pray to the Father, and He will give you. . . ."
How extraordinary that my Lord should go to the trouble of a formal petition to the Father on my behalf-that He should not be content (as I was, in my laziness) to just "be" but to "do" for me.
If Jesus himself prays, then should I not pray? There is time for meditation too, certainly, and even just for basking in the warm feeling of His love, as John leaning on the breast of Jesus. But let me never allow Satan to talk me out of praying, on some notion that it is not so important after all. Sometimes prayer is labor (Colossians 4:3).
And here is another mystery: Every moment that we are engaged in it, the Spirit (like Jesus) is praying alongside of us (Romans 8:26). I want to imitate the praying Trinity.