{October 2, 2022}

Heartland Community Church


Praying for Others

By Allison Antrim

Experiences I had last week have shown me that prayer is indeed a vital part of living a joyful Christian life. At the Women of the Word gathering, when it was time to share prayer requests, I opened up to my table group about my weariness at work and home. With a 13-month-old always on the go, a full-time job with a lot of high-level problem solving and project management that never seems to end, a house I can’t manage to keep clean and organized, and my husband going through a busy work season himself, I felt like I was drowning. My table group not only gave me comfort and encouragement right then, but several of them reached out to me during the week to let me know they were praying for me. Each time I heard from someone who had lifted me up in prayer, I drew a connection between them praying for me and positive changes I was experiencing at the same time. My weariness was dissipating, my spirit was becoming light and hopeful, and I was remembering to talk to God more frequently throughout each day. Even this morning at church, I sat near someone I had gotten to know through her daughter as well as the Crowded Table gatherings, and she told me that God had prompted her to pray for me during the service. What joy I have received from these faithful believers, each one with her own challenges and obligations, taking time to pray for me, and what good things God has done for me as a result of their prayers! 

Just as Paul prayed in Ephesians 1:15-19 for his beloved church in Ephesus, the prayers of others on my behalf have caused me to know God better. The eyes of my heart see my hope in him again. I am floored by the blessing of having each of these sisters in Christ in my life. And I can testify that his power has been present when I have felt powerless. Now I am so eager to pray for others to receive these same things. 

My prayer for you as you read this, is that this week, you would use Paul’s prayer to pray for others, and that you would experience the joy of answered prayer in your own life. Who is God laying on your heart to pray for this week?


{Sunday, October 2}

Read Ephesians 1:15-21

Observe, Reflect, Apply: Take Paul’s prayer and break it down into prompts you can use to model your prayer for others this month. Put the prayer phrases in your own words. You might even make a bullet list to put on your car dash, your mirror or office wall. Use it to remind you how to pray for your person.


{Monday, October 3}

Read 1 Thessalonians 2:13-16

Paul, Silas, and Timothy continue to share what they appreciate about the Thessalonians with gratitude to God for what He is doing in their lives. Of particular note to Paul is when they “received the word of God, you accepted it not as a human word, but as it actually is, the word of God, which is indeed at work in you who believe” (v. 13). Although separated by location and cultural background, the church in Thessalonica shares a bond with the churches in Judea because they both experience persecution for bearing the name of Jesus. God is building His “capital C” church, bringing diverse people together under the banner of His Son. In what ways do you see the word of God at work in you this week? What comparisons can you draw between the persecution going on during the Thessalonians’ time and the persecution going on throughout the world today?s to pray this way, this week, for one another and for our leaders?


{Tuesday, October 4}

Read 1 Thessalonians 2:17-20

Paul continues to express the deep love that he, Silas, and Timothy have for the Thessalonians. He describes the experience of being unable to see them in person as being “orphaned” in verse 17. Although Paul tried to make it over to see them, he says that “Satan blocked his way” in verse 18 and doesn’t give any further details. Finally, he tells them that he can’t wait to point them out to Jesus when He returns; these people responded to the good news and are living a Jesus-first life, and Paul is rejoicing. 

Are they any believers in your life that you cherish the way that Paul cherishes the Thessalonians? Who is your “glory and joy”?



{Wednesday, October 5}

Read 1 Thessalonians 3:1-5

Paul explains to the Thessalonians that Timothy was sent to encourage the church in the midst of their persecution and to help them hold fast to their faith. Interestingly, Paul says in verse 3 that the Thessalonians “know quite well” that they are destined for difficulties as a result of their faith in Jesus, and that he, Silas, and Timothy had spent a lot of time telling the Thessalonians to prepare for persecution when they were all last together. Persecution is not a fun topic, nor is it one that we tend to talk about with brand new believers in our culture. What value is there in being realistic with a new believer about the trouble that might come to them as a result of their faith?


{Thursday, October 6}

Read 1 Thessalonians 3:6-10

Thankfully, when Timothy makes it back to Paul and Silas in Athens, he brings with him good news about the Thessalonians’ steadfast faith and enduring love for the apostles. Even as Paul, Silas, and Timothy experience their own persecution, this word about the Thessalonians brings them joy and encouragement. They can’t thank God enough for the gift of joy He has given them in how He is working in the lives of the Thessalonians. Where do you see God working in the life of another believer? What joy and encouragement can you get from that?


{Friday, October 7}

Read 1 Thessalonians 3:11-13

This brief prayer summarizes chapter 3. Paul is bold in asking God to make it possible for him, Silas, and Timothy to visit Thessalonica and spend time with their beloved church. He prays that they would continue to grow in love for each other “and for everyone else” (v. 12), and that they would be strengthened for the second coming of Christ. What would it look like this week for you to grow in love not only for your fellow Christians, but also “for everyone else?” If you’re facing challenges this week, how can remembering that Jesus is coming back be a source of strength to you?


{Saturday, October 8}

Read 1 Thessalonians 4:1-8

Chapter 4 marks a move in Paul’s letter, where he gives the Thessalonians feedback on next steps in their faith. He starts by instructing them to avoid sexual immorality. In contrast to those without God who live in “passionate lust,” the Thessalonians as individuals are to “control your own body in a way that is holy and honorable” (v. 3). Paul further says that they are not to take advantage of one another sexually, and he reminds them that punishment awaits those who commit sexual sin. Christians, he points out, are not called to be or stay impure, but their lives should be holy, and anyone who rejects this teaching is not rejecting anyone but God. In your life right now, how can you keep from living in passionate lust and pursue holiness?


{extra journey resources}

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CLICK HERE for more on how to use the observe-reflect-apply approach to getting the most out of your Bible reading.

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12175 S Strang Line Road, Olathe, KS 66062

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