Friday, May 17

A great prayer

Scripture: 2 Kings 2, 1 Chronicles 29, Psalm 95, 2 Thessalonians 1

2 Thessalonians 1:11–12 With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may bring to fruition your every desire for goodness and your every deed prompted by faith. 12 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.

Observation

What a beautiful prayer!

First, I’m convicted that Paul says “we constantly pray for you.”  Constantly.  Paul prayed a lot!  He prayed “without ceasing” (1 Thess. 5:17), and in most of his letters to churches he assures them that he is praying for them constantly, night and day.  

Second, Paul prays for two things here.  

  1. He prays that “God may make you worthy of his calling.”  God calls us His children, and then makes us worthy of that calling.  That means He makes us like Jesus, His Son.  It’s all grace: God calls and God equips.  God calls and God provides.  This doesn’t mean that we have no part to play—our part is to know and love and follow Him in response to His grace.  And as we do, as we pursue Him, He makes us worthy of our calling.  
  2. He prays that “by his power he may bring to fruition your every desire for goodness and your every deed prompted by faith.”  God places within us a desire to be good and to do good.  He not only gives us the desire, but the power to be good and do good.  Philippians 2:13 “For it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.”  God works to give us both the desire and the power to do it.  He brings to fruition those good desires.

Third, Paul prays these things for one purpose: that “our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him.”  When by His power we live the life that God calls us to, He is glorified in us.  Others will see and believe and worship.  (See Matthew 5:16). And we will be glorified in Him.  This is a surprise!  Not only will God be glorified and honored, but so will you!

Application

First, I want to be a better pray-er.  Three things war against this.  One: I’m a man of action.  Two: I’m busy.  Three: I’m easily distracted.  I wonder how Paul did it?  He didn’t have many of our distractions.  Life was lived at a different pace.  Help me Lord! 

Second, I will pray this prayer for me, and for those I know and love, like Paul did.  

Third, I’m grateful for God’s work in me—He is making me worthy; He is giving me the right desires and the power to accomplish them.  My part: seek Him.

Fourth, I’m astonished that He promises that I will be glorified along with Jesus!  Can’t imagine that!

Prayer: Lord, help me to be a better pray-er, to pray constantly, intelligently, led by Your Spirit.  Today, I pray this prayer for those I love: “that our God may make you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may bring to fruition your every desire for goodness and your every deed prompted by 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.”