General prayers like “God take care of everyone in the world” and “God bless all the missionaries” are lazy prayers. It’s a prayer without an investment. Did you really mean that? General prayers don’t bring Glory to God. What does God do with these kinds of prayers?
Paul’s prayers for his friends were specific and Kingdom minded.
- v9 “This I pray. That your love may abound still more and more“. God loves specific prayers. He enjoys when we pray for people’s lives to be changed, strengthen in their walk, or situations that need intervention.
- You will love with knowledge and discernment. I knew a lady by the name of Ruthie Marcus. She is now at home with Lord. I loved getting gifts from her. They were not expensive, but perfect for whatever was happening in my teenage life. She would study people for a while, and give what fit them, and that they could use in their everyday lives. The Flower Children of the 60s loved without discernment. Paul’s prayer was for discernment, wisdom and Godly character guided by the Holy Spirit.
- Paul prayed that they would be sincere without offense. I Corinthians 5:1-7 their love was not sincere, but selfish. True love is sacrificial love.
- Being filled with fruit of Righteousness. The only way we can love like this is when we abide in the vine who is Christ, John 15:4-6, “then you will bear more fruit.”
As believers, we should have God’s Glory in all that we do.
It’s good to know someone is praying that way for me. I AM PRAYING THIS FOR YOU!
Bill Badal is Pastor Emeritus at First Baptist. He was born and raised in Baghdad, Iraq, and moved to the United States as a teenager.