“For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you”…(Colossians 1:9).
By any standard, the Apostle Paul was an amazing – and unusual – man.
And that extended to his prayer life. When I read his prayers (and he recorded several in his letters to the churches), it’s painfully clear he prayed so differently than me. Rather than just praying about folks needing jobs and battling illness, Paul prayed at a deeply spiritual level articulating issues of eternal consequence.
As the apostle prayed, he also proclaimed biblical truth and declared the glory of God. His prayer in Colossians 1 is a great example.
As far as we can tell, Paul had never been to Colosse (in modern-day Turkey). But here, confined as a prisoner in Rome, he is writing to folks most of whom he’d never met!
In so doing, he links together profound requests like consecutive pearls on a string:
- knowing God’s will: “asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding” (v.9).
- living consistent with God’s will: “that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God” (v.10).
- experiencing spiritual growth: “being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience” (v.11).
- appreciating their spiritual wealth: “joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light” (v.12).
- valuing their spiritual status: “For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins” (v.13,14).
Takeaway: Lord, teach me to use prayers recorded in the Scripture in my communication with You.