We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love that you have for all the saints, because of the hope laid up for you in heaven. Of this you have heard before in the word of the truth, the gospel, which has come to you, as indeed in the whole world it is bearing fruit and growing—as it also does among you, since the day you heard it and understood the grace of God in truth. Col. 1:3-6
Gracious Father, we bring our church families before you today, with all their brokenness and beauty. It’s not only a privilege but a central calling to pray without ceasing for one another in the body of Christ. For until the day Jesus returns, the church is your chosen means for revealing your glory, lavishing your grace, and advancing your kingdom. No wonder she is constantly being assailed by the world and assaulted by darkness.
In keeping with the way Paul prayed for every church he planted, we ask you to inundate, saturate, and liberate our churches by the gospel of your incomparable grace—new church plants and aging communities alike. There’s no other power sufficient for the task. There’s no other story, motivation, or resources adequate for the calling you’ve given your beloved people.
By the glorious gospel, bear great fruit in our midst, Father. Deepen and strengthen our faith in Jesus. Stun us, over and over and over again with the mercy and magnificence of Jesus. It’s not the size of our faith but the object of our faith that matters most, so keep revealing more and more of the glory and grace of Jesus to us. Let us boast in his work, not ours; our brokenness and his sufficiency. May the name of Jesus be the most heard, loved, and trusted name in our churches.
And by the powerful gospel, make us great lovers. Give us love for all the saints, and for the broad range of non-believers in our communities. Tear down our divisions; rescue us from our prejudices; eradicate our pettiness. Help us to demonstrate the difference the gospel makes in our worship, in our conflicts, and in our suffering. Don’t let us ever get used to loving poorly. Keep us from biting and devouring one another. Make and keep us humble, for you resist the proud but give grace to the humble.
By the hope of the gospel, liberate our hands, hearts, and resources for the work of your kingdom in our cities and among the nations. Make us a generous servant people. With us or without us, the gospel will continue to bear fruit and grow throughout the world. We want it to do so with us, Father, not in spite of us. By the gospel, revive us, transform us, and free us for your sovereign and saving purposes. So very Amen we pray, in Jesus’ glorious and grace-filled name.