Colossians 1-2(NLT link) 

Discover His heart: The Creator of all things hears and answers our prayers

There’s just something really good that happens inside of me when family and friends tell me they are praying for me – if I’m discouraged, hope builds within me; if I’m sick, faith starts to mount and if I’m fearful, peace floods my soul.  We all need prayer, and we’ll take any and all that are offered to God on our behalf.

On the flip side, I love to pray for the needs of others with hopeful anticipation of answered prayer, watching our creative God bring solutions.  I’ve learned that promising someone to pray for a need can be easily sabotaged by a busy life and those mental notes to pray for someone cannot be found as effortlessly as they once were.  Keeping a prayer journal is helpful and simply asking God to bring to our remembrance those needs we’ve committed to also brings results.

Then there is the specific prayer request that comes my way now and then that challenges me to find the will of God in how I really should be praying about that need.  I know, I know.  God is bigger than all this.  He remembers all the needs that I forget, and He, of course, knows how to answer every need; but like most believers, I take prayer seriously because I want my prayers to be effective. 

@ Colossians 1
Paul certainly understood the importance and impact of prayer in the life of a believer and focused on it in all of his letters. He was writing to the Colossians, a group of believers he had never met, to encourage them and to help them stand against an onslaught of heresy that he had heard was mounting in the church.  In verses 9-12, Paul shared a great example for us of how to pray for others, whether we remember the exact need or not.  I don’t know a missionary, leader, friend or anyone on the planet who would not appreciate this prayer.

When we pray for others, ask that God will help them:
1)  Know His plan for their lives (9)
2)  Grow in spiritual wisdom and understanding (9)
3)  Understand how to honor and please the Lord (10)
4)  Produce every kind of good fruit (10)
5)  Grow in the knowledge of who He is (10)
6)  Have endurance and patience through His glorious power (11)
7)  Be filled with joy and thanksgiving (11-12)

When we pray to God, we pray in Jesus’ name, and Paul gave one of the most powerful endorsements of Him in verses 15-20 that is found anywhere. “Christ is the visible image of the invisible God.  He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation…He holds all creation together…Christ is the head…Christ is the beginning…through Him God reconciled everything to Himself.”  Almost impossible to believe, yet true – the Lord hears and answers my prayers! 

Moving Forward: With humility and awe that He hears my requests, I will pray for those dear ones in need of His touch today. 

Tomorrow @ Leviticus 13-15