Perhaps the simplest thing I can say about what it means to pray “in Jesus’ name” is this: Praying in Jesus’ name means praying the kind of prayer that Jesus would pray. As we study the four gospels, it isn’t hard to see how Jesus thought, how He responded to certain situations, what priorities He held, and what goals He wanted to achieve. To use an old expression, it isn’t hard to see what made Him tick. So, Christian, as you listen to yourself pray, you should engage in a running analysis of contrasting what you know about Jesus with what you are saying in prayer. You might just be surprised at how different your prayers sound from what you figure your Savior would say if He Himself was doing the praying.
You’ve heard the term “power of attorney,” haven’t you? A person who holds the power of attorney for another person has the privilege of handling the individual’s affairs. However, according to the spirit of the arrangement, the one who has the power of attorney should make decisions that are in line with the wishes and desires of the one he is representing. Well, to a certain degree, Jesus gives Christians the power of attorney to handle His affairs, and much of this handling is done by way of our prayers. This means that it’s vitally important that we pray prayers that are in line with Christ’s wishes and desires.
A few years back, the letters WWJD became something of a craze. They stood for the question, “What would Jesus do?” My point with this post is that our prayer times should fit into the confines of the letters WWJP: “What would Jesus pray?” Keep these letters in mind the next time you pray, and I’ll guarantee that your prayers will be much more effective.