Summary: To see a change in our world today, we need to PRAY and PROCLAIM Christ. Pray is to talk to God for men, and proclaim is to talk to men for God.
2 Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. 3 And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains. 4 Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should. 5 Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. 6 Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.
The more I think through Paul’s advice here, the more I see this truth. To see a change in our world today, we need to be committed to the two P’s - prayer and proclamation of Christ. I summed it up this way – the 2 P’s of the Christian life
• Pray - to talk to God about men – bringing men’s needs to God.
• Proclaim – to talk to men about God – telling men the plan of God.
I. TALK TO GOD ABOUT MEN - PRAY MUCH
We’ve been talking a lot about this topic, but today I want to focus on what Paul says here - Col 4:2 “Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.”
We are to be DEVOTED to prayer, to be faithful and committed to it.
• It’s not something ‘nice to do’, ‘good to have’, but a serious HABIT to be cultivated.
• If only God can touched lives, and prayer is the only means to tap of God’s power and help, then I don’t see how we can ever make prayer an optional part of the Christian life.
Paul says we need to be ‘devoted’ to prayer – it’s a strong word.
• It has to do with being faithful to it, being committed, being loyal to it.
• You give yourselves fully to a cause.
I felt that we need to hear this phrase again and again.
• More so in our times, because words like being faithful, loyal, committed to a cause or to someone, is not longer regarded as an admirable trait.
• People don’t like to talk about commitment. They don’t find a need to be devoted, to anything or anyone.
But the Bible tells us, if we want to see a REAL difference - in our own life, in the lives of people we see around us, in our church, in our nation - prayer is the key!
• Pastor Edmund Chan wrote in a newsletter I read this week: “When we work, we work. But when we pray, God works!”
• It’s a simple line, and most of us would probably say we know it.
• But for some reason that day, when I read it, it just caused me to stop and think.
• How true is this? Do I really believe this from the bottom of my heart?
It reminds me of the great need for us to just STOP whatever I am doing, and PRAY!
• In a society like ours, so driven by doing, doing, and doing things, making things happen, being productive, and achieving the most in the fastest time…
• We are driven to do and do, try and try, and soon we believe we can make things happen.
• There is little need for prayer. Do we really need it? You see, life goes on without it. Things are fine even without it. Why pray? It’s such an unproductive thing.
Robert Holden shared an illustration in his book “Success Intelligence” - about the pit-stop in Formula One racing.
• The cars race through 50-70 laps, down to the finishing line. It’s the fastest sport in the world. It’s a picture of life in the fast lane.
• Yet central to winning the race is not about being the fastest car, because you need to stop. You need one, two, sometimes three stops in order to complete the whole race. They call it the pit-stop.
• No driver, no matter how fast they drive, can win a race without taking a pit-stop.
• In the pit-stop the drivers take quick break, receive instructions, refuel the tank, and set off on fresh tyres.
• It is in the timing and management of the pit-stop that the race if won.
Prayer is a pit-stop.
• It helps us remember who we are and what we are living for.
• We remember our vision and our identity as children of God.
• Prayer can save us so much time, so many mistakes, and so many heartaches. If only we had prayed.
• "Every failure in life is a prayer failure." Pastor Creflo A. Dollar, Jr.
We often hear people say COMMUNICATION is the key to a happy relationship.
• This sounds obvious, yet it’s the most neglected aspect in real life.