Praying with Joy
Verse 4 In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy
We have talked about the importance of praying for our friends but let’s take it up a notch. How can we pray with joy for them? What does it even mean to pray with joy?
Joy is something that we often equate with happiness but that doesn’t quite match up. Happiness is a response to something in our life that we enjoyed, it is tied up in how well a circumstance went. Joy on the other hand is based on our perspective in life, no matter the circumstance. Joy is something that comes from the spiritual heart of a person not the emotional heart. The very essence of joy is spiritual not emotional.
That means that when we think of praying with joy it isn’t about an emotional feeling that we are praying. The depth of the love we have for our friends is what drives our prayers for them. When we pray for our brothers and sisters in Christ we can do so with joy because we know that not only is it good for our spiritual life to pray for them but it is also good for them.
There are some things that can hinder our joy in praying for our friends. Things like jealously, misunderstandings and the like. The reason those hinder our joy in prayer is because they hinder our joy as a whole. Those things in our lives show a sinful attitude and sin interferes with our joy. Sin also interferes with our prayers.
The Bible says we are to mourn with those who mourn and rejoice with those who rejoice. This is another reason we can pray for our friends with joy. When we see what God is doing in the lives of our friends we can’t help but be filled with joy! If we see them growing more spiritually it will bring us joy. And as we mentioned earlier this week, when our friends are growing spiritually we can be sure that it will help us grow too.
Making It Personal
How often do you pray for your friends? Are you able to pray with joy for your friends? If not, what is hindering your prayers?
Making It Personal Kids
Do you pray for your friends? Do you find it hard to pray for your friends when you are mad at them? What does Jesus want you to do if you are mad with your friends?
Father, thank You for our friends. Thank You for giving us joy in our relationships. Help us build our prayer lives to be what You desire them to be. In Jesus’ name, amen.