shining on us and walk in your light. Small group leaders should pray for their people. We're thankful for Who and What You are and we thank You for what You mean to us. He had a request, and he made it known to God constantly — and he also let the Romans know that he was praying for them. Prayer is part of each Christian’s life, and it is part of the spiritual health of the church. God will help us in our need. He forgives us so that we might forgive those who sin against us. We can be praying for things like this, making requests like this, thanking God for how he is working in our people’s lives, and letting our people know what we are praying. I marvel at the profound theological insights that are included in Paul’s prayers. Let’s pray for our members, and let’s let them know we are praying for them. Paul’s prayers are not empty platitudes or vague generalities — they are specific and based in theological truth. How many of us pray, as Paul did, that our members are active in sharing their faith? And they are public, for our benefit. And they are public, for our benefit. I long to see you so that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to make you strong — that is, that you and I may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith.” Paul had a desire to visit Rome and to help the Christians there. Let’s pray for our members, and let’s let them know we are praying for them. This will strengthen the church, help unify it and build it up. There is no prayer in Titus, but it is prominent in Philemon: “I always thank my God as I remember you in my prayers, because I hear about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints. Even in a private letter, Paul shared his prayer for that person. The prayer list is frequently edited. Various verses remind members to pray for the leaders of the church. Often it is just a prayer of thanks; sometimes it is also a request. Paul’s example helps us see one of the ways in which a spiritual leader serves his people. “Epaphras, who is one of you and a servant of Christ Jesus, sends greetings. Your Word tells us that if we ask anything in his name, we know that … In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now…. God can testify how I long for all of you with the affection of Christ Jesus. We continually remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.”, And in 2 Thess. Perhaps a question for us today would be this: If we were dealing with a church full of problems, would we express our thanks to God for the grace given to the church in Christ Jesus? by Charles Killian, Asbury Theological Seminary Professor 1970-2004I remember the noted George Buttrick saying to us preachers, “If you are so busy that you have to make a choice between preparing your sermon or preparing your pastoral prayer, make sure you prepare your prayer.” When questioned about that response, he added, “Remember to Whom the prayer … Give assurance. Apart from prayer, life as a redeemed bondservant of Christ was both inconceivable and impossible. He gives us comfort so that we might comfort others. 1:2-3: “We always thank God for all of you, mentioning you in our prayers. It has been called one of the tools of Christian growth and one of the spiritual disciplines. It must have been very encouraging for the people to realize that the apostle was praying for them, that he was thankful for them, that he wanted them to have more spiritual benefits. God, whom I serve with my whole heart in preaching the gospel of his Son, is my witness how constantly I remember you in my prayers at all times; and I pray … They could pray for themselves, of course, but it would really help them to know that their leader was praying for them, too, even though he was far away. Paul realized that what God gives us, he wants us to give to others. Paul sets an interesting example for us today. Prayer serves not only the people we are praying for — it also serves the person who prays. Let’s go to the next epistle and see how consistent Paul is: “We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, because we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love you have for all the saints” (Col. 1:3-4). I pray that you may be active in sharing your faith, so that you will have a full understanding of every good thing we have in Christ” (verses 4-6). Paul prayed they would be full of hope. Notice also that Paul emphasized his prayers by calling on God himself as his witness. I’m thankful that he did this in public. We have a request, and we should therefore bring it to God in prayer (Phil. There are some prayers in 1 Timothy, and some exhortations to pray, but not quite like the previous epistles. “For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding. Paul was not the only leader who prayed for his people. But of ourselves, we cannot do it. And let us pray until the day Christ returns. He prayed for other churches, too, including the church at Rome: “I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is being reported all over the world. In this article, I will focus on the need for leaders to pray for the people. For I long to see you, that I … This is for our benefit as well as for theirs. It isn’t wrong to pray in public — Jesus himself did it. Pastoral Prayer by Paul Meeks. What makes it right or wrong is the motive, not whether it’s public. Although Paul did not know the people he was writing to, he began his comments to them by saying that he was praying for them. Paul’s prayers are tremendously encouraging and informative. If we say, “I’ll pray for you,” it helps a little. 1:2-3: “We always thank God for all of you, mentioning you in our prayers. A good pastoral prayer will give space for reflection and for asking God's forgiveness. Even in a private letter, Paul shared his prayer for that person. Can I learn something from Paul’s example here? Amen. Let us pray boldly, let us pray confidently, and let us pray constantly. “…having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may … — and a marvelous thing that Paul was not hiding his prayer in a closet, so to speak. Paul is very open with the fact that he prays for his people, and he is open with some details of those prayers. )[2)Corinthians)9:12–15]) … And I ask myself, Am I willing to do this? Doesn’t it encourage them to pray, too? I long to see you so that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to make you strong — that is, that you and I may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith.” Paul had a desire to visit Rome and to help the Christians there. May the power of Jesus Christ continually fill with joy, grace, peace … I do this because there are few examples of pastoral prayers online and I thought these may serve to inspire themes, passages, or ideas as other pastors and elders prepare to lead their churches in prayer. He prayed for other churches, too, including the church at Rome: “I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is being reported all over the world. No doubt these insights helped the Ephesian Christians not only be encouraged by Paul’s prayers for them, but these details would help the Ephesians in their own prayers. One result of sharing the faith, Paul says, is that we can grow in understanding the blessings Christ has brought to us. Sermon by Ian Reed on Philippians 1:9-11 St Mary's Community Church, 22/11/2020 https://www.facebook.com/StMarysCommunityChurch firstname.lastname@example.org Am I willing to tell people that I am praying for them? Small group leaders should pray for their people. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. • thanksgiving - there are many things that you can include in your prayer here - such as celebrating God's forgiveness, gratitude for his daily care, provision and protection, and answered prayers … Paul prayed about his churches, and he also prayed for his churches. It must have been very encouraging for the people to realize that the apostle was praying for them, that he was thankful for them, that he wanted them to have more spiritual benefits. Again, we see here some theology made practical. Prayer is part of each … Here is one pastor Paul … Paul was not the only leader who prayed for his people. Members in any sort of ministry should pray for the people they strive to serve, including those who are not yet members. He had a request, and he made it known to God constantly — and he also let the Romans know that he was praying for them. How many of us pray, as Paul did, that our members are active in sharing their faith? For Paul, the Christian experience was essentially (and unceasingly) an act of prayer. Therefore, among God’s churches we boast about your perseverance and faith in all the persecutions and trials you are enduring.”. And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ — to the glory and praise of God” (Phil. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! 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