Linda Wood Rondeau

Preparing the Sacrifice

PRAYING FOR FELLOW LABORERS
Tuesday, October 3, 2023 by Linda Wood Rondeau

 

For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives,[a] 10 so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, 11 being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, 12 and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you[b] to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light.

Colossians 1:912 NIV

If you’re like me, I sometimes feel a pang of jealousy when other writers “make good” while we are feeling as if we’re in prison … so many obstacles and barriers to getting our message out. As I read these words from Paul, I was convicted. Rather than be jealous, I asked the Lord to change my attitude to teach me how to pray for my fellow laborers in Christ, rather than be envious of their outward success.

Earlier in the chapter, Paul expresses his gratitude for Epaphras who was instrumental in the establishment of the church at Colosse. Paul was not jealous but rejoiced in the fruit of another’s efforts. The church was thriving, and this pleased Paul greatly. Because of their growth, Paul wanted to see the church grow even more in love and purpose.

So he prayed for them.

He prayed that the Colossians would know the full will of God for their lives and to receive wisdom. He taught that the way of obtaining wisdom was to walk in a way pleasing to the Lord. He reminded them they were saved for good works. He prayed they would receive a deeper knowledge of the Word and apply that knowledge to their daily lives, loving and supporting one another. Paul prayed the church would be strengthened with all might according to the glorious power found in Christ.

He desired for them to be filled, to be fruitful, and to be fortified.

He taught that such was only gained through the supernatural gift of strength provided by the Holy Spirit.  He reminded them that God’s power was not for fame or showcasing supernatural events but that God’s strength would help them acquire patience and long-suffering, to go the distance for God … to thank God in the midst of adversity.

He prayed that they would develop a thankful spirit.

Paul’s prayer for the Colossians can be a model for us as we pray for our family of Christian authors.

We can pray for their wisdom

We can ask God to reveal what words He wants the author to write down. Like the prophets of old who were told to “write on a scroll,” God has insights He desires to give to modern-day authors. We should pray that those who are called to spread the message via the written word, will hear God’s voice and be obedient to the words He chooses to give to them.

For their lives to be fully pleasing to God

With so much adversity coming our way, we need the prayer of fellow laborers more than ever. But for what do we pray? Outward glory? Or obedience? The Gnostics equated success with a following, by huge crowds and adoration of their accomplishments. Should we pray our fellow authors will receive rewards? We do and should, of course, rejoice when they are so recognized. However, perhaps the focus of our prayer should be for them to have the courage to obey God’s instruction.

Pray for every good work

We may be called to pray that our fellow authors’ works promote the message God intends that their works will be effective and that their manuscripts reach those God intends. Moreso, we can pray that their lives will reflect that very same message they write.

Pray for endurance

We should pray they not be discouraged for long and that God will continue to give them a vision. We can pray that they do not value their worth by outcomes that the world views as success, but rather on longevity of service. That even in the face of obstacles, our fellow writers will continue the work.

Christian author, for what do you need prayer?

  

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