Aside from John 17, most of Jesus’ prayers are recorded in snippets or simply as observations that He was praying. When taken together and observed, both still reveal much about His prayer life.

Jesus prayed often (Luke 5:16), sometimes continuing in prayer all night (Luke 6:12). He told His listeners that God’s ears were open to all of their needs, even knowing them already, and that our heavenly Father could be reached by the simplest of prayers (Matt. 6: 5–13, 25–32). When raising Lazarus from the dead, He thanked His Father for hearing Him, gladly admitting that He knew, “You always hear me,” (John 11:42). While in the worst agony ever endured by a human, Jesus prayed to His Father both in the Garden of Gethsemane and while on the cross (Matt. 26:36–44; 27:46; Luke 23:34). It has been said before: if Jesus saw prayer as such a necessity in His own life, how much more should His children feel their need of prayer?

Jesus even saw prayer as a way of ministering to His disciples. After warning Peter that He would deny Him before the next morning, He followed it with, “ ‘But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren,’ ” (Luke 22:32). He spent a large portion of His final prayer time for His disciples, both present and future (John 17:6–26). This redemptive and prayerful spirit of Christ is expressed in the last two verses of James. Jesus turned many people back from wandering from the truth, and He continues to be the reason people can be turned back at all. Jesus saves the souls of all who come to Him from death, and it is His blood that covers all the multitudes of sins.

Furthermore, He is the power behind the entirety of James’s practical letter, and He is a perfect example of all of its counsel fulfilled in the life. Jesus extends His ministry of reconciliation to all who claim His name (2 Cor. 5:18). “The strongest argument in favor of the gospel is a loving and lovable Christian,” (Ellen G. White, The Ministry of Healing, 470) and James has simply given practical examples of what that looks like, day in and day out. It looks like having faith in Jesus, loving Him more than this world, and this love showing up in one’s words. It looks like treating others the way we would want to be treated. It looks like prioritizing character over worldly possessions. Quite simply, it looks like Jesus.