I have not stopped thanking God for you. I pray for you constantly. (Ephesians 1:16)
The mark of a godly leader is one who is grateful and prayerful of those around him.
What a prayer Paul prayed! He didn’t want his friends just barely eking out an existence, but he desired for their lives to experience explosive growth and joy!
He prayed for them to experience…
- … the full weight of God’s glory
- … the vast knowledge of God’s revelation wisdom
- … an ever-increasing understanding of just who God is
- … an enlightened mind to grasp God’s nature
- … an unshakable hope in God
- … the immeasurable richness of an intimate relationship with God through Jesus Christ
- … God’s power working both in them and through them
- … the rock-solid security they have in Jesus
- … their inestimable value they were to God
- … their indispensable place in the Body of Christ
I like the way Eugene Peterson captures this prayer in The Message:
That’s why, when I heard of the solid trust you have in the Master Jesus and your outpouring of love to all the followers of Jesus, I couldn’t stop thanking God for you—every time I prayed, I’d think of you and give thanks. But I do more than thank. I ask—ask the God of our Master, Jesus Christ, the God of glory—to make you intelligent and discerning in knowing Him personally, your eyes focused and clear, so that you can see exactly what it is He is calling you to do, grasp the immensity of this glorious way of life He has for His followers, oh, the utter extravagance of His work in us who trust Him—endless energy, boundless strength!
Spiritual leaders should be working for and praying for the ever-growing maturity of those under their care. When they see that growth, they should burst out into grateful prayer. And if they don’t see the growth they anticipated, they should pray in faith believing that maturity will soon be visible.
Let me say it again: The mark of a godly leader is one who is grateful and prayerful of those around him.
This is part 40 in my series on godly leadership. You can check out all of my posts in this series by clicking here.