Devote yourselves to prayer!

Scripture reading for September 11th:  Colossians 4

In order to live successfully with a continual view towards heaven and God’s will, Paul encouraged the Colossians to pray specifically.  “Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.  And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ for which I am in chains.  Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should.  (Colossians 4:2-4)

Paul knew that prayer was a key to fruitfulness and protection from the forces of evil.  Believers must be watchful against the tide of evil in the culture as well as the schemes of Satan through false doctrine and teachers.  (Colossians 2:7)  Thankfulness is a state of humility that continually acknowledges God’s generous supply of all things in every circumstance.

Paul also asked for prayer himself.  Although in jail, he didn’t ask to be set free.  He asked for a open door for the Gospel message.  Asked for empowerment to preach clearly and effectively, sharing the mystery of Jesus Christ, God’s Son and Savior of the world.   This lead naturally to the next instructions!

 Be wise in the way you act towards outsiders, make the most of every opportunity.  Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know hot to answer everyone.”  (Colossians 4:5-6)  Believers are called to reach the lost–those outside the family of God.  Watchfulness in prayer also includes recognizing opportunities to share the Gospel.  Our conversations and life must exhibit the freedom of living under God’s grace.  We must depend on the Holy Spirit to give answers to the questions and objections of the lost.  Prayer and the wisdom of the Holy Spirit season our speech with salt, making the lost thirsty for God!

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