(By Ruth Potter)
It’s an awesome and wonderful privilege to approach God in prayer. And writing about the topic of prayer always brings me to a place of humility. I am simply a learner, and my desire is to know God and make Him known.
Today, I want to turn our focus to Paul’s prayer for the believers at Colossae. In his introduction to the letter to the believers there, Paul tells them of his thankfulness for their faith and their love for all the saints and then he offers this wonderful prayer for their continued spiritual growth:
“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” (Col 1:9-12).
Wouldn’t you love to have had Paul pray this for you or for your assembly! I believe Paul’s prayer impacted these dear believers. It’s intercessory prayer, not only for their personal circumstances but for ongoing spiritual regeneration. This is a wonderful, exemplary prayer for us too. We can learn from Paul’s consistency and perseverance in prayer. We have an ongoing spiritual need for God to renew our minds and conform us more into the image of Christ.
When we seek God first, the Word of God and the power of the Holy Spirit will increase in our lives and bear spiritual fruit: “The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control” (Gal. 5:22,23). It’s a progressive, inside-out transformation. We can’t do it merely on our own strength, or through external conformity; we need the Holy Spirit to transform our character. This spiritual transformation will affect our relationship with God, with others, and have great eternal value.
What would happen if, every day, we seek God, we confess our sin, and we pray that we would grow deeper in the knowledge and wisdom of God? We won’t do it perfectly, but as our hearts are focused on Him, He will fill us with his supernatural strength and power. He will transform us to be more like Christ.
I wonder if today you would be willing to personalize Paul’s prayer. Let’s pray it for ourselves, our spouses, our children, and our assemblies. And as we pray, let it be in faith because our God is the One “Who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think” (Eph 3:20).
Photo Credit: Benjamin Joyce