“And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment; That ye may approve things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offence till the day of Christ; Being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God.” Philippians 1:9-11.
In the book of Philippians, Paul is writing to the church in Philippi, to the people whom he had preached to and won to the Lord. He reminds them that he is very thankful for their dedication to the Lord, and that he has all confidence that they will continue to let the Lord work in their hearts and perfect them. In the above verses, he tells them there are three things that he prays for them.
- That their love would grow and that it would be manifested to those around them by their knowledge and judgment. It is one thing to say we love the Lord, but another thing to show that love to everyone that we have contact with. If we do not show love to others, how can we say that we love God?
- That they would approve things that are excellent. We make choices every day as to how we spend our time, and what things we let our minds dwell on. The definition of the word, excellent is: “possessing outstanding quality or superior merit; remarkably good.” Sometimes we must let go of some things that are good and choose what is better.
- That they would be sincere and without offence being filled with the fruits of righteousness. As followers of Jesus Christ, we must always be sincere in our dealings with others. People know whether we are putting on a show or if we really mean what we say. If we show compassion and love, it will bring praise and glory to God.
We all have a responsibility to pray for our families, our friends, and our fellow church members. What better prayers to pray than these three that Paul has given us in these verses? As we enter a new year, let’s bring these requests to the Lord for our each other. We may face many things in the coming days, but as we pray for one another, we can have confidence that the Lord is hearing us and continuing to do a work in our hearts and lives.
Verse 6: “Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:
I will pray for you who are reading this, and I appreciate you praying for me. And together we will grow in the Lord and fulfill His will in our lives.
Prayer: Lord fill our hearts with love and concern for each other and bind us together in love as we hold each other up in prayer, and may you receive all honour and glory.
Devotion by Anne Johnston