The Pattern of Powerful Prayer

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One of the greatest gifts we can give is to lift a person in prayer. And there is no more powerful way to do this than to speak Scripture on his or her behalf.

Colossians 1:9-10A

Praying effectively isn’t something we naturally know how to do—for most Christians, it must be learned. In fact, one of the disciples who walked with Jesus asked for help in this area (Luke 11:1).

So often we hear requests to bless, protect, and provide for a person. While these are fine to ask of the Lord, there is another, more powerful way to pray: When we use Scripture to speak to the heavenly Father, our conversation contains His own divine authority.

The apostle Paul is the author of today’s passage. It shows us the specific requests he brought before God concerning the Colossian church. These apply to us today as well. Let’s focus on the first two requests today, and we’ll look at the remaining four over the weekend.

Paul prayed that the Christians at Colossae would...

  • Understand God’s plan for their lives. While the Lord often does not reveal everything at once, He will give seeking hearts enough information to trust and follow His way.
  • Conduct themselves in a manner worthy of Christ and pleasing to Him. Paul longed to see the Colossians’ lives prove consistent with their true spiritual identity: A follower of Jesus is evident to other people because of lifestyle and spiritual fruit (Gal. 5:22-23).

One of the greatest gifts we can give is to lift a person in prayer. And there is no more powerful way to do this than to speak Scripture on his or her behalf. Colossians 1:9-14 is a beautiful example of a passage to pray as we bring loved ones and ourselves before God’s throne.

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