Memorise Colossians 1:9
“…God would open unto us a door…”
Paul gives a prayer request in Colossians 4:3 “Withal praying also for us, that God would open unto us a door of utterance, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in bonds.” Paul knew the great importance of prayer and therefore humbly asked the church to pray for him. Note he does not pray for his personal needs to be satisfied, but rather that God’s will be made clear. Throughout Scripture, the pattern of prayer is always to pray for the spiritual, not the physical. Paul prayed that God will open doors for him to preach the gospel to those who have not heard it, especially since he is not free to go where he wishes, being a prisoner in Rome. Paul did not presume that in order that he may continue preaching the gospel, God must cause him to be released from prison; for there were many that believed in Christ when Paul preached to them under house arrest. Thus he does not pray to be physically released from prison (like most of us fearful for our own safety might!) but prays instead that God will grant opportunities for him to preach the gospel. Through the contents of his prayers, we can see the heart of Paul, as one who always sought to do God’s Will and glory Him, rather than to see comforts and pleasures for himself.
As Christian students, what do we often pray for? Instead of just praying for good grades, pray that God will give you opportunities to glorify Him through your studies. As a student, we must always remember what God’s calling for you is. God certainly did not send His Son to die on the cross so that you do well for your studies and glorify yourself. Instead, our purpose is always to be a witness and testimony for Him. When you demonstrate the life of a Christian through your actions, the people around you will notice that your behaviour is clearly different from others in being Christ-like. When you have examinations pending, instead of praying for physical needs like easy examination questions, pray for spiritual strength to handle temptations such as the temptation to fear or to murmur about how difficult the paper is. When examination results are going to be released, pray for wisdom on how to discern God’s Will for you. In contrast, to pray for high marks might be to presume that God will aid you in pursuing the path you desire, not considering that God may close that door to you.
Thought: What other examples of a student’s presumptuous prayer can you think of?
Prayer: May I pray for the spiritual rather than the physical from now on.