For the second day in row, we are looking at prayer. This multi-faceted jewel of life allows us to communicate with God on behalf of ourselves, our loved ones, our neighbors and our enemies.
Today’s focus is on how prayer equips us to deal with each day’s victories and defeats.
Today’s Devotional Scripture
“So we have continued praying for you since we first heard about you. We ask God to give you a complete understanding of what he wants to do in your lives, and we ask him to make you wise with spiritual wisdom. Then the way you live will always honor and please the Lord, and you will continually do good, kind things for others. All the while, you will learn to know God better and better. We also pray that you will be strengthened with his glorious power so you will have all the patience and endurance you need.” (Colossians 1:9-11, New Living Translation)
Prayer is a continuous adventure into our thoughts and God’s thoughts, our concerns and His concerns, and our will and His will. I often wonder if God misses us when we fail to pray?
My suspicion is God misses us whenever we’ve broken off communication. I know I’ve come up with excuses. Sometimes it’s like I am playing “Let’s Make a Deal” with Him. “I really need to visit this person in the hospital, Lord,“ I rationalize and then the Holy Spirit reminds me that I can pray in the car with my eyes open as I drive to the hospital.
The Apostle Paul does not appear to be a person who makes excuses or prays in generalities. In today’s passage from Colossians, he prays with some specific targets or objectives in his heart and mind.
He begins by asking God to make sure that the people completely understand His will for their lives. The burden is not on God, but on us because we intentionally or unintentionally have the ability to work against the will of God.
Jesus said in Matthew 7:13-14: “You can enter God’s Kingdom only through the narrow gate. The highway to hell is broad, and its gate is wide for the many who choose that way. But the gateway to life is very narrow and the road is difficult, and only a few ever find it.”
No earthbound GPS is going to help us identify God’s will for our life and find the narrow road to the eternal gate. Efffective prayer and the guidance of the Holy Spirit can not only lead us in the direction our Heavenly Father wants us to go, but also accompany us as we travel down the right road to heaven’s gate..
This passage from Matthew also reminds us that Jesus didn’t speak in politically correct terms. He told the truth, which is why the Apostle Paul prays that we will be equipped with spiritual wisdom (Colossians 1:9). Like Paul says in 1 Corinthians 13, we’re working with a cloudy mirror. We need to pray, lean on the Holy Spirit, read The Bible and seek the advice of wise Christians to discern the right decisions to make as we face life’s challenges.
The Apostle Paul also believes we can achieve our spiritual goals and objectives. Verse 10 says we will honor and praise God through our good works. Though our good works cannot save us, they can be a vibrant testimony to the love and grace of God as seen by the service we provide to those around us..
As we prepare for Easter, I hope and pray all of us, especially those seeking to serve like Jesus through the EACH (Everyone A Chance to Hear) initiative, learn to know God better and better. Like Paul in Colossians 1:11, I pray that we will be blessed with strength, endurance and patience. For our strength does not come from earthly things, but through the Spirit of the living God.
– Deni Martin
Heavenly Father, thank You for spiritual wisdom. Help me to understand what You are calling me to do. Let my life honor You in all my ways. Amen.
Please Note: Scripture and prayer supplied by 33:3 – A 40 Day Devotional Connecting to God! available through EACH in Detroit. This material is being reprinted in the Examiner with the expressed approval of EACH.
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