Name above All Names

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John 17:1 NIV

 

Since the middle of August, my daily Bible reading has consisted of one chapter, the same single chapter. Yes, you heard me correctly, and no, I have not just quit my reading after that first day’s “chapter-a-day requirement” was finished. 🙂

For years now, I have asked the Lord where He wanted my reading to land, and I have read through the books where He led me. After my diagnosis with RA, He comforted me through the book of Psalms. I thought that I was moving pretty slowly, when I was still reading there after a year. But this latest directive that I heard has proven to be even slower.

In August I joined in a beautiful online Bible study with my friend Lisa Brittain, and her book, 31 Days of Gleaning with Ruth. In our last session she read through the prayer of Jesus in John 17 as her closing prayer for those of us who had participated in the study. My dear friend Gayl Wright, who was also part of the group, suggested it might be a good study to read through that chapter every day, to learn more about Jesus’ prayer. The ears of my heart pricked up, and I knew that God was directing me there also. But I did not plan on staying in that one chapter for months!

Do you know what happens when you read a chapter over and over every day? The words begin to become part of your heart without even realizing it. I found myself whispering under my breath, “Father make us one,” as I felt my frustrations mounting one day. Another day I found myself praying, “Jesus, You have all authority in this situation!”

And one day I realized that the prayers I had been uttering from the very lips of my Lord were telling me something more deeply about Him than I had ever considered before. These statements that Jesus prayed were giving me and all of His followers a core understanding of just who Jesus is. I was amazed as I began to note those characteristics every day.

I grew up studying the Attributes of God: His Omnipotence, Omniscience, Omnipresence, and more. But I could not remember a single class where I had studied the attributes of Jesus–at least not one based entirely on one chapter in the Bible.

Yet these were words that Jesus had uttered in the most intimate setting of all. He knew what awaited Him. He knew His time was short, and therefore He prayed to His Father for those He loved. But in that prayer for us, He did not just ask for safety and ease, (although He did ask for our protection.) No, He gave us glimpses of His relationship with His Father. He gave us glimpses of His nature. He gave us glimpses of where He had come from, and where He was going.

These are the notes I shared with my son when he asked what I had been learning as I paused for so long in John 17. Maybe they will stir something in your heart also?

  • 17:2 Jesus has all authority, and He grants eternal life
  • 17:3 Jesus Christ was sent by the Father
  • 17:4 Jesus brought the Father glory because He finished God’s work
  • 17:8 Jesus has the words God gave Him, and He gave them to us
  • 17:10 Jesus has everything the Father has
  • 17:11 Jesus was going back to the Father, and Jesus has been given His Father’s name
  • 17:13 Jesus has JOY within
  • 17:18 Jesus came from the Father–He is not of this world
  • 17:19 Jesus has sanctified Himself for our sake
  • 17:22 Jesus is one with the Father
  • 17:24 Jesus has the Father’s glory because the Father loves Him, and Jesus was given it before the world began
  • 17:25 Jesus knows the Father
  • 17:26 Jesus makes Himself and the Father known to us so that He may be in us.

When I began this reading in mid-August, I had just finished a year of side-effects from medications gone awry. I didn’t know that soon after that my RA would begin an even more intense flare-up. I also did not know that my Heavenly Father would be re-introducing me to my Best Friend, the ONE who would walk with me through the fire. I did not know, but HE knew.

There was a Name greater than all, an Authority high above every other, a Glory shining around me, as Jesus began to more deeply reveal Himself to me.

 

 

Have you been introduced to the One who holds the Name above every other name?

Maybe you already know Him but have felt a hunger to know Him more deeply?

Or maybe your heart has drifted from the place of First Love with Him?

 

I would love to pray with you today:

Dear Jesus,

Thank You that You gave us Your own words as You prayed for us. Thank You that You knew we would have questions about who You really are, and You met all of our wondering in some of Your last words ever uttered here on this earth. Lord, we confess that we have not known You as deeply as You have wanted us to. You invited us into Your very heart as You prayed for us! We lay aside our own definitions, and we hold onto the truth of Your Word. We want You to have all authority in our lives. We want to see the ONENESS with You that You have given us, and we want to see Your Glory. Will You begin to reveal Yourself more deeply to us today, here on this earth where You have placed us? We are filled with love for You.

In Your Name we pray,

Amen.

 

I am linking with:

#LMMLinkup

#Teaandword

#Tellhisstory

#TuneinThursday

28 thoughts on “Name above All Names

  1. “Do you know what happens when you read a chapter over and over every day? The words begin to become part of your heart without even realizing it.” I love how the scriptures came to you as you prayed, because you had hidden them in your heart by reading over and over again. Thanks for sharing what you have learned about Jesus. May we be united with Him more and more each day. Blessings, love and hugs to you, dear Bettie! xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Gayl,
      Thank you so much for following the Lord’s prompting with that suggestion! He truly has been opening His Word to me over these past months when I so needed our Jesus. Yes, He plants those words so deep every time we read them–He really is our Living Word. I appreciate all of your prayers and thoughts, my dear friend! Blessings, love and hugs to you too! xoxo

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Dear Bettie, I love how you shared your learning with us. If I may, I would like to share that list with my boys. I admire your dedication to His Word. I lifted you up today, sister. I pray that new medicine is doing its rightful job. Love, Julie

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Julie,
      Oh, yes, please feel free to share the list, and anything else here whenever you feel led, my friend. Our sons hold such a sweet place in our hearts, don’t they? May the Lord bring His Words and Himself home to their own hearts ever more deeply too. I am so very thankful for all of your prayers Julie. Love and hugs for you!

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    1. Dear Regina,
      Thank you for your sweet words, they mean so much to me as I know the Lord is so present in your studies that you share with all of us! I love that thought–John 17 being the real Lord’s Prayer. Amen. May He bless you today.

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  3. Wow. This is such a deep and inspiring piece. My heart goes out to you as you battle this painful health condition. May God continue to sustain you each day. Thank you for sharing your journey with Bible reading plans over time. Though I have tried memorizing passages and chapters, I never tried reading just one chapter for a month to see how God writes those words in my heart and mind. The truths you discovered about Jesus in John 17 are truly beautiful! Thank you, Bettie, for your faith through it all and for this wonderful post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Melissa,
      Thank you for your sweet thoughts and prayers. Yes, He has been teaching me so much about His sustaining power through all of these days. What would we do without our Precious Jesus to walk with us, and to bring us deeper into His presence? He is so good to teach us! I pray that He will guide you to the passages that He wants to open to you, and that a lingering there would bring you blessings too!

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  4. You are in my thoughts and prayers today (and every day)! Arthritis (RA & OA) is a terrible thing! As your “pain twin”, I know the pain you endure ❤ May today give you a reprieve from your pain and know… your words help others renew their faith as you write them! Blessings to you, my friend!! 🙂

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    1. Oh we are so blessed to be able to lift each other up in our prayers, aren’t we? I am so grateful for your encouragement as well, my “pain twin.” Jesus weaves us together, and then helps us to walk the path set for us–whether at home in front of my screen here, or you with beloved Jack, walking his trail there! Thank you for your sweet words friend! Blessings to you today!

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  5. I’m in awe of how Jesus revealed Himself to you more deeply by reading this one passage every day for months, Bettie. How God re-introduced you to your “Best Friend, the ONE who would walk with me through the fire.” It’s amazing how God prepares us. May we trust Him and His plans! Thank you for these encouraging truths that send balm to my heart. 🙂 Love and hugs to you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Trudy,
      Yes, I am in awe also, at the ways that the Lord shows us just how much His Word really is living and active. He is so good to bring us His preparation isn’t He? I want to trust Him more, as He continues to show us how much His help is right here for us. I am so blessed that He brought you encouragement here! Love and hugs to you too my dear friend! xoxo

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  6. Thank you for this precious gift, Bettie. You really encourage me to sit with the LORD and wait upon Him. There is so much packed in this passage. The prayer was so precious and truly touched my heart. May the LORD continue to uplift you through all the pain. Sending love and hugs today.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Anna,
      Thank you for all of your encouragement and prayers also. What a precious Lord we have, who longs to sit with us. I am so thankful that our pain does not put Him off, but He calls to us right there. Our Jesus is so beautiful. May you feel His presence today, as you wait with Him. Much love and hugs for you also!

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  7. What a sweet gift to spend time with God by resting in one chapter of the Book of John. I love the way you outlined each verse and provided the main idea. You have a beautiful way of sharing your heart and all God is teaching you. Thank you for being a blessing in my life.

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    1. Dear Mary,
      Thank you for your sweet encouraging voice that you always share. You are such a blessing to me also! I am so grateful that our Lord knows how to walk us through His Word. Even when It feels so slow some days, He still speaks just what we need. Blessings, hugs, and love to you today!

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  8. Can you imagine Bettie if from the day we were able to take in God’s word we read one scripture passage per month, over and over? Wow! You’ve also reminded me the importance of pause–of staying present in what is in front of me instead of constantly thinking what’s next. And it’s always encouraging to read how Jesus knew exactly what you needed!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Lynn,
      Oh, what an amazing thought Lynn. To think of all of the ways that God could have spoken so deeply, to rest in a verse through those many years. His Word is so living and active–something I think we don’t grasp often enough! I am grateful that He keeps drawing us to see Him in those moments, and in so many ways that He wants to help us. Blessings and love to you!

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  9. Thank you, Bettie, for this beautiful glimpse into how the Lord led and spoke to you through a concentrated study of John 17. It’s awe-inspiring and a bit challenging to me too, truth be told, because my limited ability to focus tends more toward a little and often, pick and mix approach. I usually read several devotionals in one day but rarely pause over a passage for any great length of time, like you have done here. Though a verse might strike me and I will carry the words for a while or journal something. I am humbled by your devoted, surrendered heart for God, for His Word and for His leading and guiding. You always encourage and inspire me to come up higher. Thank you, too, for reminding me about these amazing attributes of Jesus. Blessings and love to you, dear friend! xoxo

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    1. Dear Joy,
      Oh I understand the limited ability to focus–in fact that is part of why I initially paused also. I felt that I wasn’t grasping the depth of the Word, and then I heard God speak that it’s ok to pause for longer than what I thought it needed to be. He is so gracious to understand our weaknesses, and then to meet us right there! And what joy He brought, more than I could have guessed. Thank you for the ways that you invite us to come up higher with Jesus in your writings also. I appreciate your transparent heart so much. It’s there that Jesus joins us to Himself so beautifully. Blessings,hugs, and love to you my Dear Friend! xoxo

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  10. This is wonderful , sweet friend. I have been wanting to come and visit you, but we have no internet for a while. I have to catch it when and where I can. So thankful to spend some time with you this evening. Sending love and hugs your way!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh Dear Cheryl, it’s so nice to have you here again. I am sorry about your internet, but thankful that you are still able to connect now and then. What a joy when we can praise and rejoice together! And what a blessing when we can lift each other in prayer. Blessings, love and hugs to you Dear Friend!

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  11. Our Lord’s High Priently Prayer was for us who believe the words He gave HIs disciples. His Word and Spirit so gloriously make us one with Him and the Father. Thank you for sharing what He has given you. Blessings as you continue to learn from the Master ~ many names and many claims we have from Him.

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    1. Oh yes, His Word and Spirit are so beautifully uniting us with our Lord. What precious blessings He brings to us as we sit at His feet. Thank you so much for your sweet prayers and blessing. May I continue to press in further with Him. Blessings and Love to you!

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