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Jul 06, 2020 08:00am
Praying Through Colossians: A Confident Hope
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Colossians is a book that shows we need Christ for an eternity with God in heaven. As we have a thankful attitude and desire to focus on the hope of an eternity in heaven, our faith begins to grow. As our faith, hope, and love grow and God’s power helps us to become more like Jesus, we become even more thankful and grow in the fruit of the Spirit. We continue on, devoted to prayer and sharpening our ability to communicate well so that we can do all that God has given us to do. 

As the fruit of the Spirit flows out of us, others become attracted to the hope that is within us and accept the offer of Jesus’ blood to cover their sinfulness before a pure and holy God. Thankfulness erupts again and the church is nourished and grows in faith, hope, love and freedom. Then, thankful and desirous hearts focus on the hope of an eternity in heaven . . .  

The following are four chapter summaries, four chapter key verses, and four fill-in-the-blank prayers inspired by Paul’s letter to the Colossians:

Colossians 1: We are GLORIOUS RUINS! We, stained by sin, are able to be in the presence of a holy and pure God because of Jesus’ sacrifice. His blood covers us and makes us acceptable to God. This confident hope gives us stronger faith and love for others as we are forgiven and headed to eternity in heaven. This confident hope through the good news gives us freedom from gaining our worth through worldly avenues.

Colossians 1:4: “For we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and your love for all of God’s people, which come from your confident hope of what God has reserved for you in heaven.”

Colossians 1:11-12: “We also pray that you will be strengthened with all his glorious power so you will have all the endurance and patience you need. May you be filled with joy, always thanking the Father.”

Colossians 1:13-14: Praise to the Father as he has “rescued us from the kingdom of darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of his dear Son, who purchased our freedom and forgave our sins.”  

Colossians 1:21-22: “This includes you who were once far away from God. You were his enemies, separated from him by your evil thoughts and actions. Yet now he has reconciled you to himself through the death of Christ in his physical body. As a result, he has brought you into his own presence, and you are holy and blameless as you stand before him without a single fault.”

Father, God, please give ____ grace and peace!

 I ask that you lay upon several hearts to thank you for ___ today and to pray for him/her.

 May ___ have faith and love that flows from a confident hope of what you have reserved for him/her in heaven.

 May the good news continue to bear fruit and change lives just as it has from the first day ___ heard and understood the truth about your extravagant grace. 

Holy Spirit, give ___ a love for others. Give ___ complete knowledge of your will; give him/her spiritual wisdom and understanding. 

May ___ produce every kind of good fruit while honoring and pleasing you. 

I also ask that ___ will be strengthened with your power so that he/she will have all the endurance and patience needed.

 I thank you that ___, even though he/she is broken by sin, may be able to stand before you, covered by the blood of Jesus, and considered holy, blameless, and without a single fault. ___ is one of those glorious ruins.

 I pray that ___ will continue to believe this truth and stand firmly in it, not drifting away from the assurance he/she received when he/she heard the good news. 

Colossians 2: A relationship with Christ is a circle of thankfulness. Once we recognize our sinfulness and a need for a Savior, we are thankful for Christ and for his sacrifice for us. As we continue to choose to follow him, we see who he is and what he has done, is doing, and will do, which produces even more thankfulness. This increase of thankfulness becomes a witness for Christ spurring others to enter into the circle. 

Colossians 2:6-7: “And now, just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must continue to follow him. Let your roots grow done into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness.”

Colossians 2:20-21,23: “You have died with Christ, and he has set you free from the spiritual powers of this world. So why do you keep on following the rules of the world, such as, ‘Don’t handle! Don’t taste! Don’t’ touch!’? . . . These rules may seem wise because they require strong devotion, pious self-denial and severe bodily discipline. But they provide no help in conquering a person’s evil desires.”

Father, thank you for Jesus, the only way to live in a life-giving, eternal relationship with you!

Thank you that you desire for ___ to grow in an intimate relationship with you, his/her Creator.

 I pray for ___ to be a part of a body of believers who are encouraged and interwoven by love and not focused on worldly rules, but the truth that strengthens faith.

May ___ have such a faith based upon truth that thankfulness overflows.

I ask that ___’s faith grows to be rooted and established in Christ so solidly that he/she not follow human- and evil-glorifying philosophies, but only those based upon your Word. 

Nourish ___ to yourself and remind ___ that he/she has been set free from the spiritual powers of this world and given power to overcome his/her evil desires.

May others see the life, thankfulness, freedom, and love that is growing in ___’s life, and may ____ graciously share the mystery of Christ so that others may have new life in him. 

Colossians 3: When our new life in Christ spurs us to take our eyes off earthly things and put them on the reality of heaven, then we will become more like him, full of the fruit of the Spirit, forgiving, loving, peaceful and thankful. We will be irresistible representatives of Jesus. We will have strong marriages, families, and reputations as hard workers who have a thankful attitude.

Colossians 3:1-4: “Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honor at God’s right hand. Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth. For you died to this life and your real life is hidden with Christ in God. And when Christ, who is your life, is revealed to the whole world, you will share in all his glory.”

Colossians 3:16-17: “Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom he gives. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts. And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through him to God the Father.” 

Father, how can it be that we will share in all of Jesus’ glory when he is revealed to the whole world? You are such a good and generous God. 

I pray that ___ will die to self and find his/her real life in Christ Jesus. 

May ___ put to death sinful, earthly things that are loitering within him/her. 

I ask that ___ will have nothing to do with lust, evil desires, greed and idolatry.

I ask that ___ get rid of anger, rage, spiteful behavior, defaming of character, lying and dirty language. 

I pray that ___ will put on his/her new self and be renewed as he/she learns to know you and become like you. 

I pray that ___ will grow to authentically believe that Jesus is all that matters. 

Since Jesus is all that matters and his love for ____ is great, may he/she choose to have tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.

I pray that ___ will not be easily offended and will forgive others’ faults. 

And, above all may ___ love well and let the peace of Christ rule in his/her heart. 

I pray that ____ will let thankfulness fill his/her heart and be a peace-filled representative of Jesus.

May ___ work for you, Lord, and not just for people, while remembering that his/her reward is coming, a heavenly inheritance. 

Colossians 4: Devotion to prayer with a discerning mind and a thankful heart is critical in order to live wisely among nonbelievers and to engage them in stimulating and intriguing conversations that lead to them asking questions about the hope of eternal life with Jesus. We need to keep learning how to communicate more effectively and confidently because it is so important to carrying out the ministry that God has given each of us to do. 

Colossians 4:2: “Devote yourselves to prayer with an alert mind and a thankful heart.”

Colossians 4:5-6: “Live wisely among those who are not believers, and make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone.” 

Father, thank you for the direction that Paul gives on prayer and relating to nonbelievers. 

Father, I ask that ___ will devote him/herself to prayer with an attentive mind and a thankful heart.

I ask that you will give ___ many opportunities to speak about God’s plan of saving souls from hell to a peace-filled eternity.

I pray that ___ will live wisely among those who are not believers and make the most of every opportunity by having gracious and smart conversation and answering questions in a way that is intriguing.

May ___ be and have a beloved brother or sister and faithful helper to serve in the Lord’s work together.

I pray that ___ will communicate effectively and give encouragement. 

Father, I pray that you will make ____ strong and perfect, fully confident that he/she is following your whole will. 

May ___ carry out the ministry that you, Lord, gave ___ to do. 

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