A Prayer for the Church
“And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him: bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy; giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light.” Colossians 1:9-12
How do you pray? What do you pray for when you bow your head for the saints—Christ’s bride? How do you pray for yourself? What requests come to mind? Do you ask for physical well-being, nice things, and good cheer? Do you pray the same prayer for yourself and others when you come before the Lord?
Not that it’s wrong to pray for earthly or physical concerns, but I fear that sometimes (at least for myself) our prayers become consumed with only the external. When we share prayer requests among fellow believers, our requests barely go beyond physical aches and pains.
During a study of Colossians, I came across this prayer from the apostle Paul for the church. Paul prays that they would be filled with knowledge, wisdom, and understanding so they may walk in a worthy manner. He asks God that they would bear fruit and increase in their knowledge of Him. He prays that they would be strengthened to endure the trials ahead with joy that causes them to give thanks.
What if we prayed prayers like this for our local churches? What if we prayed like this for our friends? What if we prayed like this for ourselves? What if when we shared our prayer requests, they were for our lives to be sanctified and sin to be mortified? What if we prayed for boldness in sharing the Gospel, despite the hardships it may bring? How might our churches look different, friends?
Dear God, please fill us with the knowledge of Your will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so that we may walk in a manner worthy of You and bear fruit in every good work and increase in the knowledge of You. Please strengthen us with all power, according to Your glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy that we may give thanks to You, who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. Amen.
Spend the rest of this month incorporating the prayers you find within the epistles of the Bible for your family, friends, church, and self.