Colossians 4

Colossians 4 has Paul ending his letter to this church. He emphasizes just how important prayer is.  “Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving”.  Paul doesn’t just tell them to pray, but rather to ‘continue steadfastly’. The ancient Greek word translated continue is built on a root meaning ‘to be strong,’ it implies persistence and fervor.  Prayer isn’t something that should happen when we think about it or it fits our schedule or needs.  Prayer should be a priority – not focused on what we want or need – but on the goodness of God and His blessings.  It is an act of praise and needs to be focused on God, not us.  Prayer is about getting on His page, not trying to get Him on ours.  It is us lining up with His agenda, not trying to force Him to make our agenda His own.

Paul goes on to say “Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time”. Life as a Christ Follower isn’t only lived in the prayer closet. There also must be practical, daily, well lived life with those who are not necessarily believers.  There is one fact that is equal for all of us no matter our faith – the reality of the limits of time.  Every person on the planet gets the same 168 hours each week.  If we are going to walk in wisdom, we have to be intentional in how we use that time, making sure we are ‘making the best use’ of each precious hour.

Paul tells us how we should engage with every person we meet.  “Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person”.  Scripture often talks about our role as Christ Followers to be salt and light.  He tells us to speak with grace – where we speak and cultivate the gift of pleasant and wise conversation – but at the same time speaking with words of salt that challenge the status quo and draw those we talk with to a desire to learn more about Jesus Christ because of our words and how we live our life.

Paul wraps this letter talking about his team.  It’s a list of faithful fellow Christ Followers who have or are helping Paul with the ministry of the Gospel.  While Paul was an Apostle and has to be toward the top of the list of great men in all of the Bible, he certainly doesn’t tackle the work of the ministry on his own.  He not only involved others to work beside him, he also gave praise and honored them as not only part of the team but as key partners in doing what God had entrusted him to do.

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