DATE POSTED Tuesday, 2023-01-31
WRITTEN AT: O’Brien, FL
SCRIPTURE FROM: Colossians 4:2-6
TRANSLATION: Good News Translation (GNT)
BIBLE TEXT: 2 Be persistent in prayer, and keep alert as you pray, giving thanks to God. 3 At the same time pray also for us, so that God will give us a good opportunity to preach his message about the secret of Christ. For that is why I am now in prison. 4 Pray, then, that I may speak, as I should, in such a way as to make it clear.
5 Be wise in the way you act toward those who are not believers, making good use of every opportunity you have. 6 Your speech should always be pleasant and interesting, and you should know how to give the right answer to everyone.
APPLICATION: Paul was a born again, bold, dedicated man of God. His life was transformed from that of a persecutor of Christians, to that of loving Christians so much that he would take time to speak truth into their lives, even from prison. It was for the very reason that Paul was in prison, that he rose up to share with believers, even while still being punished. My heart was touched by Paul’s declaration to Christians, for I could see that individuals and their churches could rise up and be a mighty force for the Kingdom, if only we would take Paul’s instructions to heart. Let’s look deeper into how effective we have become in following the commands of Paul:
- Be Persistent in Prayer while Giving Thanks. And Stay Alert (vs 2-4) – There’s probably two words in this one command that challenges the church of God today. For it is challenging to find workers who are persistent in their commitment and in their lifestyles. Many, but not all, who claim to be ‘Christian’ will find their way out to church on Sunday mornings, if there’s nothing better going one, or if the weather is not good for beaching or other activities. To pursue the godly needs of our community, we cannot disappoint a Sunday School classes by not having a teacher show up because this was not their priority that day. The second challenging word in the command is ‘Prayer’. There was an elderly gentleman who threatened the pastor, at a church I attended, that he would not return to midweek services if all he was going to do was ‘Pray’ at our ‘Prayer’ meetings! Many times, I wonder if that is the mindset of many church members, because Prayer meetings are the worst attended service, and the one that forces attendees into a withdrawn corner of their world. They can’t pray in public, is the frequent excuse. Do you suppose that one who doesn’t pray in private might be one who is challenged to pray among other believers? But isn’t the value of prayer seen throughout the Bible? Remember what happened on the day of Pentecost? Always give thanks for what God has already done in response to your prayers, and always stay alert to what others are praying for, for those are their needs and their cry for fellow believers to pray with them for those concerns. Just as Paul asked his church to pray for him and his ministry, I am convinced that our own pastors flourish in their calling when the Holy Spirit responds to our prayers for our pastors and their respective ministries. I had a pastor who said that he tried very hard to use the KISS method in his preaching. Keep It Simple Silly! In the secular world we were encouraged to make our correspondence readable by a 6th grade level student. For if we wrote something very professional, spent postage for mailing the letter, only for the recipient to struggle in understanding what we wrote, then we have truly wasted our employer’s money, and failed to get our purpose across in writing the letter. Paul knew that time was short, so he asked that the people pray for him to keep his message clear and simple. I am convinced that our pastors still need that same prayer on their behalf today. Keep it simple Pastor! Dummy that message down so that even the illiterate could understand!
- Be Wise how you Act towards the Unsaved (vs 5-6) – Some say that you must not visit the local theater, or pub, or…. anywhere else that non-Christians hang out. While I understand why proponents of that statement feel that way, I’m not so sure that principle has not taught believers to avoid non-Christians. I believe that Paul is proposing that we show the love of Jesus to everyone, especially the unsaved. Don’t shrug off questions by the unsaved, but instead try to encourage them through the love and inspiration of the Holy Spirit that dwells within us. Be ready to speak to what it is that inspires, blesses, heals, and fills you to overflowing each and every day, and how you are anxiously awaiting the day when Jesus will call you home to glory!
Friends, as we read our Bible each day, the Holy Spirit will open our eyes to what we need, and how we should use what we have. It worked for me today, and I pray that in my sharing, it will help you catch a glimpse of the glory of knowing Jesus as your Lord and Savior!
BLESSING(S) NOTED: Imagine God using you to represent Him, or be an ambassador for Him, to all that you come into contact with today!
PRAYER: Who are we that a King should live and die for? Yet You loved us so much that the very purpose of Your life became evident when You hung on the cross at Calvary, and rose again, so that we might enjoy our final destiny – our heavenly home with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit! Thank You Jesus that You saw such value in a sinner such as I, that You saved me and handed me the keys to Heaven! My readers, listeners and I are forever grateful for the hope of eternal life. But while allowed to remain on earth a little longer, please use us for Your glory to encourage the unsaved and point them to the empty grave and their hope for eternity in heaven. Give us boldness to stay as strong as Paul was and give us a deep desire to adhere to Paul’s instructions to the church, plus Your commands and teachings. Oh, that they might see Jesus, is my humble plea for all that we will make contact with today! AMEN!
FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!