How is your prayer life? That is a question that many Believers fail to evaluate. If Believers are honest with themselves, they will acknowledge that prayer plays a small portion in their daily lives. I know the “defense reaction mechanism” will be activated when there is even the slightest insinuation that one’s prayer life is not what it should be. We may pray at mealtime with a memorized few sentences. We may pray at bedtime, offering the same nightly phrases to which we have grown accustomed. We may intensify our prayer time when we are facing problems and difficulties, but what I am talking about is not prayer snippets, but uninterrupted sessions with our heavenly Father. The question is not how much time we spend in the Word, but how much time do we spend with its Author. Some of the biggest problems Christians face are brought about as a result of an anemic prayer life. “Fasted prayer” has a direct negative influence on a Believer’s spiritual condition.
There is nothing wrong with praying for yourself unless it is seeking favor during a season of disobedience; e.g., praying for financial deliverance as a result of your lack of monetary discipline. What we are called to do is to pray for one another. Now, this is where many Believers leave the guidelines of Biblical prayer and center their “requests” on the physical, mental, and materialistic needs of others. We should pray for one another, but our outgoing prayers should center on the spiritual needs of the recipient.
Colossians 1:9-11 offers a prayer guideline that, when pursued, will help the army of the Lord “get in shape.” As Paul prayed for the Colossians, we should use the same guidelines in praying for one another. He started out by praying that they might (1) be “filled with the knowledge of God’s will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding.” How many Believers today know what God’s will is for their lives? Some Believers have an inkling but don’t have the wisdom and spiritual understanding to implement that action. When we fail to recognize His directives for our lives, we become “pew potatoes.” We spend our time going to church, but so little time taking the church to the community. Paul continued to pray that the Believers would (2) walk “worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him…” Christians are to exhibit a Christ-like appearance which shows they are worthy followers of Jesus. We are to be at full capacity in pleasing Him. Paul then prayed that the Colossians would (3) be “fruitful in every good work and increase in the knowledge of God.” Every day should be a day of learning. He stated that the Christians will be “strengthened with all might” as a result of God’s power. Our Bibles are the source of Divine energy which God feeds us through the Holy Spirit. Finally, Paul summates his prayer by petitioning God to give them (4) “all patience and longsuffering with joy.” Believers can be very impatient. While going through spiritual construction we need to exhibit joy, knowing that God is working in our lives.
Christianity is a team commitment. Too many Christians are failing to be involved in the lives of others. Many Believers are struggling to be consistent in their confessed walk. They need the “shoring” up of their actions so they can exhibit Biblical truths. Believers need to pray faithfully for one another. Is our prayer life centered around others? Let us learn that as we pray out the front door, someone is praying in our back door! How is your prayer life?