What we pray for reveals what we value. In 1 Thessalonians 3:11-13 we get a little insight into some of Paul’s prayer time for the believers he had to leave behind in Thessalonica. Let’s do a quick survey of the things Paul and his team were praying for and see what we can learn from what it was they were praying for…
- Paul and his team gave thanks for the Thessalonians response to the Gospel (1:2-3)
- Prayed that God might enable his team to help the Thessalonians to grow up in their faith through good teaching and leadership (3:10)
- Prayed that God would make a way through the devil’s hindering (2:18) so that they could be re-united with the Thessalonians again for their mutual encouragement (3:11)
- Prayed that the Thessalonians love would abound towards one another in the church & also about for all people (3:12)
- Prayed that the Thessalonians might be blameless on the day of Jesus’ second coming (3:13)
Prayed that they might become more and more like God (sanctified) and that they be kept blameless until the day Jesus returns (5:23-24)
In summary, incidentally through this letter we discover some of the things that really mattered to the apostle Paul when he prayed for others.
- He gave thanks to God!
- He prayed for enabling power to accomplish that which God had called him to do.
- He prayed for God’s breakthrough where things felt stuck/hindered
- He prayed for these believers to be like God, to be abounding in love
- He prayed that God would keep them safe through trials to the very end of the age.
Think about your prayers for a moment.
What things are your prayers typically characterised by if you were to do an audit?
How could you pray through some of these things that were the apostle’s prayer focus in your life and over the lives of others?