For this reason we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you…. (
Often we pray wholesale when we should pray retail. General prayers are generally pointless! We pray, “Lord bless so and so…” and how would we know if He did? Prayer needs to be specific. Blind Bartimaeus cried, “Son of David have mercy on me.” Jesus asked him, “What do you want me to do for you?” When he asked for sight, Jesus opened his blind eyes (
Mark 10:46-52). It is also true that prayer must align with
God’s will if we are to expect an answer.
The will of God is in the Word of God, so prayers grounded in Scripture
unleash the faith that moves the hand of God.
Paul’s prayer in Colossians
1:9-11 is one that we can confidently pray for other Christians.
PRAY FOR THEIR WISDOM, “that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding” (v.9b). How valuable this is! When Solomon was given a blank check from God, and could ask for anything he wanted, the young king requested wisdom—and God was so pleased with that He threw in everything else along with it! No wonder Solomon would later write in Proverbs that it is worth more than gold! Every day brings a multitude of choices. It is not always a matter of choosing between right and wrong—which is more readily apparent—but can be a choice between the good and the best—and that is more difficult. God will enable us to see what lies ahead—“wisdom”—and to see what lies behind things—“spiritual understanding.”
PRAY FOR THEIR WALK, “that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him” (v.10a). Discerning the will of God should direct our walk with God. Convictions should set our course. Some folks just get a big head from what they know, when what is needed is a burning heart for what we should do! Our walk is to be worthy of the precious name that we bear—the name of Christ. Peter tells us we “should follow His steps” (
1 Pet.2:21). Our prayer is for a life that is fully pleasing
to God. We pray for our brothers and
sisters to have a passion for His pleasure as did Paul when he wrote, “I press toward the goal for the prize of
the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”
PRAY FOR THEIR WORK, “being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, for all patience and longsuffering with joy” (v.10b-11). Our head—discerning God’s will—our heart—directing our walk—and our hands—doing God’s work—leads us to fruitfulness, forcefulness, and faithfulness. Our prayer for the saints is that as they abide in Christ they will bear much fruit for the glory of God (see
15). This connection to
Christ causes His very life to flow in force—a divine energizing—for
supernatural service. Satanic opposition
is guaranteed, but God gives endurance that is greater still, so we do not give
out, give in, or give up! We can even
smile in the struggle and sweat—full of joy!
This doesn’t arise from self-reliance, but spiritual dependence.
Pray this for your fellow Christians. I know I want you to pray this for me! By the way, it would be good to seek this for yourself also. Just a thought.