Masters, give unto your servants that which is just and equal; knowing that ye also have a Master in heaven.
2 Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving;
3 Withal praying also for us, that God would open unto us a door of utterance, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in bonds:
4 That I may make it manifest, as I ought to speak.
5 Walk in wisdom toward them that are without, redeeming the time. Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.
7 All my state shall Tychicus declare unto you, who is a beloved brother, and a faithful minister and fellowservant in the Lord:
8 Whom I have sent unto you for the same purpose, that he might know your estate, and comfort your hearts;
9 With Onesimus, a faithful and beloved brother, who is one of you. They shall make known unto you all things which are done here.
10 Aristarchus my fellowprisoner saluteth you, and Marcus, sister's son to Barnabas, (touching whom ye received commandments: if he come unto you, receive him;)
11 And Jesus, which is called Justus, who are of the circumcision. These only are my fellowworkers unto the kingdom of God, which have been a comfort unto me.
12 Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ, saluteth you, always labouring fervently for you in prayers, that ye may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God.
13 For I bear him record, that he hath a great zeal for you, and them that are in Laodicea, and them in Hierapolis.
14 Luke, the beloved physician, and Demas, greet you.
15 Salute the brethren which are in Laodicea, and Nymphas, and the church which is in his house.
16 And when this epistle is read among you, cause that it be read also in the church of the Laodiceans; and that ye likewise read the epistle from Laodicea.
17 And say to Archippus, Take heed to the ministry which thou hast received in the Lord, that thou fulfil it.
18 The salutation by the hand of me Paul. Remember my bonds. Grace be with you. Amen.
“Hello, Jesus loves you,” the voice on the other end of the telephone answered, and I knew I had reached out to the right person! I was a new Christian. It had taken me quite awhile to make the commitment, and on this particular night I was really struggling spiritually, all alone. A couple at church had taken me under their wings, having themselves experienced firsthand the struggles and doubts that sometimes hound new Christians who are leaving behind destructive lifestyles. The wife was the only person I could think of to call, and those words were her telephone greeting. We prayed. We sang “Power in the Blood.” We prayed some more, and the dark, oppressive feeling left. That night, I learned to pray.
“Earnest, vigilant prayer” is not just a command, it’s a gift. We can converse directly with God our Father, who holds all the power in the universe. How amazing is that?
Many of us have experienced times when our prayers seemed to go nowhere. At these times we might reflect on this passage and its description of prayer: devoted, watchful, thankful, earnest, and vigilant – and remember to whom we are privileged to pray!
Educator and Social Worker, Fall River Mills, California USA