A truly holy person prays constantly (1 Thessalonians 5:17), as Paul did (1:9). Paul desires God to act in every situation, so Paul naturally expresses his desires in prayer. That is why Paulís words in his letters so often become prayers. We may say that we come to God in prayer; however, a truly holy person never leaves God. He is always aware that God is present; so he is always praying.
So, Paul has just written about patience and comfort. We might consider patience to be a good personal quality, and comfort to be a pleasant feeling. However, Paul was thinking about God and his kindness. So, Paul believes that patience and comfort are the gifts of God. He calls God: Ďthe God of patience and comfortí. It is God who helps his people in the difficult situations of their lives. From him, and through his word, the Bible, they receive the patience and comfort that they need.
In prayer, therefore, Paul expresses his desires for Romeís Christians. Paul's desires match Godís desires for them. So, he prays that they will live and work together, to the honour of God. That is the most important thing in any Christianís life: to give honour to God. That is the most important task in any church: for its members to join together to give God honour.
It is good to pray for someoneís health, and happiness. It is good to pray for new members in a church. However, our attention should not be solely, or even mainly upon these things. Instead, our attention should be upon God himself. Then in our prayers, we will desire those things that he desires.
Next part: Accept each other (Romans 15:7)
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© 2018, Keith Simons.