“Pray also for me, that God will give me a message when I am ready to speak, so that I may speak boldly and make known the gospel’s secret”.
Eph 6:19 GNB
How do we pray for people? Here again we seem to struggle. We might manage to pray, “Lord, bless Peter”. If a person is ill we know how to say, “Lord, make Peter better”.
Paul was a Christian leader. He was probably the greatest Christian leader there has ever been. But he remembered his own past and how he had made life difficult for the disciples. And he knew his limitations. He did not ask the Ephesian Christians to pray that he might know comfort, or a good life or “blessings”. He sought their prayers that he might serve God, that he might be given the right message by which he could reach other people as an evangelist and that he might teach and build up those who were already believers. He needed God’s help in his own personal confrontation with evil, but more than that, the task of “getting through” to people was a massive task and an onerous responsibility. And that was what he wanted them to pray for on his behalf. Breaking down the reticence and scepticism of one’s hearers requires skill and courage. It calls for great tact to avoid offending people of other faiths. And it demands careful thought as to just what line to take that will point people to Jesus. It takes humility not to parade oneself in subtle ways or to make the whole exercise a showing off of one’s abilities and knowledge.
Pray for your leaders, that they too will have the right message for people today.
PRAYER THOUGHT Lord, give all your ministers the true gospel message today.