Then Paul asks his people to pray that his service will be accepted by the saints. Paul did not want to offend the brethren he just wanted to be a blessing. He wanted to do what he knew God had called him to do but he knew that God would have to open the doors for him and prepare the way. As your missionary travels raising support he will need the saints to accept him and his ministry. What is the key to raising support as a missionary? Most of all it can be simplified by saying that the saints will have to accept his service. That is exactly what we need to pray for. Often times the missionary is on deputation for a long time, more than really necessary and we wonder why. I would like to beseech you or beg you to strive together with him in prayer that where he goes to present his ministry folks would accept him and his service. Pray that folks will see the importance of his work and ministry and get behind it. Might I add that your pastor needs you to pray the same thing for him. He needs God’s working and help in his ministry that his service will be accepted by the saints. How many times do men of God prepare good Bible messages that the folks (saints) need to hear but they are not accepted. Let us pray that after our pastor has sought face of God his message will be accepted and taken to heart by the folks of our church.
Thirdly in this passage Paul asks them to pray that he return with joy. How important this prayer request is to the missionary and pastor. The missionary leaves to go out on deputation. Will he be able to return with joy? Will he be successful? If he goes out and preaches ten meetings with small love offerings and no support it will be hard to have joy. If he goes to the field and spends a term and sees no real results it will not be easy to return with joy. We must pray for him and ask God to give him success in the work he has been called to. Let’s pray that God be at work in his life. Have you ever gone soul winning? You know what it means to come back with joy and you know what it means to come home sad and beaten. Let us pray that the missionary can go to the field and see the hand of God on his ministry. Let’s pray that God open doors to him. Let’s pray that souls will be saved and that he can come back with joy, excited about what God is doing. The same prayer request applies to your pastor. He visits, prays, preaches etc. Do we want to see him excited about what God is doing in his life, then we must pray and help him.
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; That I May make it manifest, as I ought to speak. Colossians 4:3-4