“Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ Jesus, greets you. Always struggling on your behalf in his prayers that you may stand mature, fully assured in all the will of God.”
– Colossians 4:12
What a description of Epaphras. He is a servant of Christ Jesus, who is always struggling on others’ behalf in his prayers. What a phrase. Someone who struggles on behalf of others in praying for them. This picture of Epaphras as a servant of Jesus interceding for other people, daily pleading before God for them, for their faith, that they may stand mature and fully assured in all the will of God.
I just ask the question here. Do you struggle on others’ behalf in your prayers? Who are you interceding for, standing in the gap for, in ways that would be described as struggling on others’ behalf in your prayers? This is what we’re called to do for each other and so I want to pray for you in this way, and I want to encourage each of us to pray for others in this way, specifically.
Praying for Others
Obviously, I don’t know all the people in your life that you are called by God to struggle on their behalf in prayers for, but to think through who are the people in your life that you’re called to struggle in this way and to do it? To pray in ways that you are wrestling with God, not just over things in your own life, but over things that are going on in others’ lives, that you are praying and pleading and interceding for them?
So, God, I want to do this right now for the people who are listening. God, I know that they are under attack from the adversaries today in all kinds of different ways, in their lives, in their families, in their work, in churches. God, I pray, I plead for your grace, and your help, and your strength for them. I pray that you would guard them from every spiritual attack from the enemy, from spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. God, I pray that you would have help them with the shield of faith in their lives to extinguish the flaming arrows of the evil one. God, I pray that you would guard their hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. Pplease help them to not believe lies from the adversary about themselves, about you, about the world around them.
Colossians 4:12 Prays for Us to Stand Firm
God, I pray that you would help them to stand firm, that you would help them to stand mature and fully assured in your will. Help them to walk in your will. God, as they face temptations today. That you would help them to turn from those temptations. Please, oh God, please help them to live in holiness and righteousness and to experience the full abundant life you’ve created them to live. God, that they would not turn aside to broken cisterns that can’t hold water today, that they would seek you as their sole satisfaction and that you would use them, oh To spread the good news of your grace in others’ lives. God, pray for them right now, and I pray that you would teach us all to struggle on others’ behalf in our praying.
Colossians 4:12 Reminds Us of Those Around Us Who are Far from God
God, we have all kinds of people you’ve put in each of our spheres of influence. In our homes, in our neighborhoods. In he church, in our workplaces, relationships we have, friendships we have. Help us to be faithful to struggle on others’ behalf in our praying, to love each other like this. God, teach us to pray like Epaphras prayed. So that as a result of our praying and your grace. In responding to our prayers. That people around us might stand mature and fully assured in your will.
Praying for the Maba People of Chad
God, as we often do on this podcast, help us to struggle in prayer for people who some of whom have never been prayed for amidst unreached people groups, God, today for the Maba people of Chad, for over half a million of them who are almost all Muslim. We pray. We plead right now together, please save the Maba people of Chad. God, please cause the gospel to go to the Maba people of Chad. Please, please, God, cause disciples we made open blind eyes to see the beauty and the glory of Jesus.
Help them to see your love for them in Jesus. God, we pray that disciples would be made in churches be planted. And multiplied among the Maba people of Chad, God. We struggled together right now before you, father in heaven, hallowed be your name among the Maba people of Chad. May they know your mercy and your love and your grace in Jesus. God, please, please, God, please cause your gospel and your grace to go to them. Please cause the power of your spirit to awaken them to new life. We plead, struggle, before you on behalf of the Maba people of Chad. That they might stand mature and fully assured in all your will and your love for them. God make us servants of Christ Jesus. Who struggle on others’ behalf and our prayers in Jesus’ name we pray all these things. Amen.