Summary: Change is inevitable--so roll with it!
Change! What comes to mind when you hear the word change? Do you think of the "jingle,jangle" in your pocket? Do you think of the many times your mom would change the furniture in the house around, making you stub your toe in the darkness? What about the many times you have to change outfits because you couldn’t figure out what to wear? Change! This is even hard for church members--especially in the pastoral leadership. And in the words of a friend of mine, "You have made everybody glad." "How", I asked. "Some were glad to see you come, others were glad while you were there and now some are glad to see you go." No matter what perception you may have on change, we must all realize that change is a necessary part of life. Some of us welcome changes, while others of us despise change.
One show that usually catches my attention is that of "Family Matters" which features the Winslow family and their pesky neighbor, Steve Urkel. Steve is a nerdy, clumsy type fellow. When he knocks something over, or breaks something, he usually asks in that irritating voice, "Did I do that?" But Steve is a smart fellow for he invents things--sometimes they work and most of the time they don’t work. But he built a machine in which he could turn himself into another person. He goes from Steve Urkel to Stephan Urkel. He goes from bumbling idiot-to-smooth, cool and popular with the ladies. Even Laura falls head over heels for Stephan....All because he has a radical change from Steve the nerd to Stephan the cool and smooth. Just as Steve’s change is a radical one, we, too must experience a change.
Learning to pray can change our lives. We live in a time when lives need to be changed for the good of man kind and the glory of God. Sinners need to become saints and saints need to become more like the Lord Jesus Christ with each passing day. I believe the most powerful thing anyone can do for someone else is not to loan them a couple of dollars, not someone to run errands, but for someone to also pray for them. Because through prayer you and I can touch the very heart of God who in turn can touch anyone, anywhere regardless of the circumstances. The power is not in the prayer itself, but in the power that God releases in response to the prayer. Is there someone in your life you are praying for everyday? Do you believe God is going to change someone’s life because you are praying for them?
From this prayer, Paul says we can pray the kind of prayers which release God’s power into our lives and the lives of those we are praying for. There are reasons for unanswered prayers in our lives and one of them is that we get fired up for a few days. We shake the heavens with our prayers and about a week later, we forget that prayer because we have failed to see the results as we would want to see the. We have the idea that God is not going to act because He does not meet our schedule as we would desire Him. We stop praying! Our prayer lives are just like our Bible-reading lives--inconsistent. Yet Paul says we have not stopped praying for you. I believe that if mothers and fathers would pray specific consistent prayers for their children, they would see dramatic changes in their children. If husbands and wives began to pray for each other, they would see something happen in their marriages. If you prayed for your church and really prayed for God’s anointing, you would see a change in the church. But you should not expect a change, not expect the anointing of God by simply coming in on Sunday morning and politely bowing your head for a dose of "cold prayer". Whatever happened to getting up early by your bedside and praying to God--whatever happened to prayer meetings at church--I believe they have been substituted for "fellowship hour", or "coffee hour". A songwriter once penned these words, "we don’t pray like we used to..." As a young girl, I remember vividly the deacons would pray and I knew something was going on in my little bitty soul that would say "thank you Jesus."
In verse 9, we are admonished to ask God to fill us with the knowledge of His will. Paul did not pray that the Colossians would wonder about the will of God. Too many of us are wondering what the will of God is for our own lives. Listen, if God has a will for our lives, and He does....His desire for our lives will be clear. You won’t have to wonder, hem or haw, about the will of the Lord for your life. We pray, Lord, save me, yet we continue doing the same old stuff...looking for the will of the Lord through the Ouija Board or calling 1-900-ARE-YOUSTUPID!...looking for the will of God through the tea leaves...We are looking for a change! Praying can change thing...praying can change people....praying can change situations...praying can change circumstances.