“Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.” (Eph. 6:10-20).
Think about the things Paul did not ask people to pray for. He didn’t want prayer for his release. He didn’t ask for deliverance from further punishment. He wasn’t worried about execution. He didn’t talk about how hard it was to be alone far away from home.
Rather, he was single-minded in his desire to get the job done. He wanted to be part of God’s work more than anything else, including his comfort and safety.
Most of my prayer life consists of my asking God to spare me discomfort and protect my loved ones. I pray for healing and help and solutions to my problems. In truth, I rarely ask for him to help me to be good at doing his work.
I think whole churches can do this, too. We focus on each other’s health and loss, and we’ll express concern about our church growth because we want don’t want to lose what we’ve accomplished. We reach out to people so they can help us maintain our church.
Our prayer life reveals our priorities and it dictates our direction. What would happen if we prayed more earnestly for God’s kingdom to be expanded? What if we prayed to be more effective for His glory (rather than ours)? What if we remembered that His will is more important than our comfort and concerns?
I predict it would revitalize our souls and our churches.
It might not do a thing for our comforts, but since that isn’t as big a priority as accomplishing God’s will, perhaps our comfort is not so important.