“We constantly pray for you, that our God may count you worthy
of his calling, and that by his power he may fulfill every good
purpose of yours and every act prompted by your faith.
We pray this so that the name of our Lord Jesus may
be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the
grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.”
(II Thessalonians 1:11-12)
Thoughts… I pray for people—everyday. I assume you do too. Often the focus of our prayers is for their comfort and success—and that is not necessarily a bad idea. But wouldn’t the better way to pray for them be as Paul prayed for these Christian in Thessalonica? The priority of his intercession for them was that God would count them worthy of the calling that he had placed on their lives, and that he would fulfill divine purposes through them. He prayed that through God’s power and their submission to that power Christ would be glorified in them and they would be glorified in Christ.
Now that is an altogether higher form of intercession! And when you think about it, isn’t it really far better than asking God for another person’s happiness and comfort? Isn’t it truly more noble than praying for someone’s success? At the end of the day, wouldn’t that person be better off if God’s power had enabled them to accomplish his purpose, that their achievements would have been those inspired by the Holy Spirit rather than their own spirit, and that their efforts had caused a good word to be spoken about God rather than themselves?
I don’t know about you, but if that could be said of my life by the end of this day, I would take that over the usual definition of a good day any day!
As you are prompted to pray for another today, take Paul’s approach. In fact, why don’t you just use Paul’s prayer—I don’t think he would mind.
Oh, and by the way, if you are taking the time to read this Blog today, I just want you to know that I am praying Paul’s prayer for you. If you have made the effort to get this far, know this: I am lifting your name and your cause before our gracious Father. I am praying Paul’s Thesslonian prayer for you: That you will be counted worthy of your calling and strengthened with supernatural power to carry out the good purposes that the Holy Spirit is prompting you to fulfill. My deepest prayer for you is that through your life, Jesus Christ will be glorified. And I also pray that you will know something of his glory in your own spirit at some point during this day. May his blessings rest upon you in very real ways today, and as you lay your head down on your pillow tonight, may you hear him whisper in your ear, “Well done, good and faithful servant. Enter into my Father’s rest.”
Prayer… Lord, you see the dear person who is reading this. Fulfill this Thessalonian prayer in their life. Bless them with every form of spiritual abundance and enlarge their capacity for faith. Let your hand be with them today. Keep them from causing harm, and keep them from being harmed. Make them a trophy of your grace and a conduit of your glory. In Jesus name I pray, amen.
One More Thing… “Let your prayer for temporal blessings be strictly limited to things absolutely necessary.” —St. Bernard