Many times we hear fellow Christians asking us to pray for them. Sometimes we learn of many of the details and then other times, it is an unspoken request. Whether we really know of every detail is of no consequence in my thinking. So what should we consider in our prayers for this person? Let’s look at what the Apostle Paul told the Colossians.
Colossians 1:7-12 (NASB)
7 just as you learned it from Epaphras, our beloved fellow bond-servant, who is a faithful servant of Christ on our behalf, 8 and he also informed us of your love in the Spirit. 9 For this reason also, since the day we heard of it, we have not ceased to pray for you and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, 10 so that you will walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; 11 strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might, for the attaining of all steadfastness and patience; joyously 12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in Light.
Identify those who are in need of prayer: (vs 7-8)
1) Paul is sharing his desire to lift up the brothers in Colosse as it was made known to him by Epaphras.
2) Paul shows us that when we learn of a need and are convicted by the Spirit to pray for them, we should not cease to pray.
So what does Paul pray for?
That they will have knowledge of His will, Spiritual Wisdom and Understanding
..and why does Paul ask it?
So that they will…
1) Walk in a manner worthy of the Lord
2) Please God in all respects
3) Bear fruit in every good work
4) Increase in the knowledge of God
What will they find?
They will be strengthened with all power according to His glorious might. They will attain steadfastness and patience in Christ.
What will they do?
Joyously give thanks to the Father, for He alone has qualified them (and us) to share in the inheritance of the “Saints of Light”!
How do we apply this to our lives?
The answer is simple: A brother or sister in Christ has sought you out to share a need that they believe requires intercessory prayer to be brought before God Himself. As Christians, we know that we have the Spirit in us interceding with groanings too deep for words (Romans 8:26), but we are called ourselves for further works for Him. I believe that if someone earnestly seeks your prayers for them, you should understand that the Spirit has sought you out to lift this situation before God. It is something that I believe should be taken seriously, humbly, in great earnestness and without ceasing as the Spirit brings it to your mind.
Our response is critical to this person!
We need to lift up this situation and as a guideline pray as Paul demonstrated to the Colossians.
1) Thank God for being Omniscient and being who He is!
2) Make yourself right with God confessing your own sin.
3) Lift up this person / situation by name
4) Ask that God’s will alone be done.
5) Ask that this person will receive Spiritual Wisdom and understanding
6) As they will learn of His will that they will obey it. Joyously give thanks to the Father bearing fruit and increasing in knowledge for the glory of God alone
As an intercessory prayer partner for this person, talk to them by following up with a card, phone call, text or email letting them know that you have not forgotten them and that they should see His will and obey it. Encourage them that as God reveals Himself, they will be strengthened through Him. Encourage them to give Him thanks for the steadfastness, patience and answers to their prayers.