A Prayer of Power

Foundations – Fullness

“Being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy; giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.” (Colossians 1:11–14 ESV)

This prayer is a prayer that we all need to learn, memorise, and frame it so that we are constantly asking God for doing God’s will, for Spiritual wisdom and knowledge, Spiritual Intelligence and for living and walking in a manner that is pleasing to Him.

Now the focus of the prayer is not knowledge, wisdom, Spiritual Intelligence but on power, status, and freedom.

I grew up in a country where power was evident and where the abuse of power was even more significant. So, it was usual for me to see the police with a weapon. So, I felt at home here in Northern Ireland.

You see, any police force has a mandate, given by the people and financially funded by the state to provide protection and if it is necessary to sacrifice life itself for the safety and care of its citizens.

When you look at a police officer uniform, you see power and authority. Authority given to them by the law of the land and the power to exercise it when it is required.

I believe that Paul and his team are praying for the Christians in Colossae to understand that they too have been given power and authority, based upon the foundation of what Christ has done for them. So, this power and authority are Christ gifts to us, we all have it, and we should all exercise it.

So, let me ask you this: What do you think a non- Christian sees when they see you? Do they see a people of power and authority, or do they see no difference whatsoever? Of course, if they see divine power and authority, they will somehow acknowledge it. But if they, don’t I wonder why? Has the enemy still been able to blind us to the reality of what we have in Christ?
I want to tell you now that the devil hates this! So he will do every to neutralise the power and authority given to us.

The Gospel of Luke tells that when Jesus sends out the twelve disciples, “… he called the twelve together and gave them power and authority over all demons and to cure diseases, and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal.” (Luke 9:1–2 ESV)

I believe these words of Jesus, and I think these words are not just for the twelve disciples but all of us! As Acts 1:8 says, “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” (Acts 1:8 ESV)

This power is for ministry; this power if for the extension of the kingdom, and this power is for you and me.

However, many have understood these verses as the norm of how the Christian life should be lived. To which I am in favour. We should be living and seeing daily the power of God being manifested in our lives. It should be the norm.

What is not the norm is interpreting these verses as the cure for all our sufferings, pains, and hurts.

Now, Jesus also said that in this life, we would suffer, face persecution and tribulations, and the Bible is a collection of books that details the suffering of humanity because of sin.

Here is where I believe we have a proper balance when it comes to praying for power and authority in the lives of every believer.

“Being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy;” (Colossians 1:11 ESV)

I believe in the power of God; I believe that Jesus’ baptism of fire is his power for us. I believe that we have been given power and authority, and I believe in anointing of the Holy Spirit. In this verse alone, we have three words about power: Being made strong with all power and through his might. Just think about how amazing this is!! All this power at our fingertips, all given to us because of the Gospel.

But here is the balance, I believe that the most significant victory is when we understand that the victorious Christian life is when we have this power to sustain us in our long-suffering and when we do not have patience. It comes with a Spirit-filled joy!

Endurance is the ability to pass through any experience and trust God to see us through.

“We pray that you’ll have the strength to stick it out over the long haul—not the grim strength of gritting your teeth but the glory-strength God gives. It is strength that endures the unendurable and spills over into joy,”
(Colossians 1:11 MESSAGE)

Why is this so important? It is vital because we live in a place and at a time where endurance, long-suffering, and patience are much required. The supernatural strength of the power of his glorious might is what enables us to bring much comfort in our suffering, persecutions, and tribulations. Is it painful? Yes, but his power comes from the one who understands grief and from the one who overcame death. It is also essential because it helps us not get discouraged when healing or overcoming our bad habits.

“Giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light.” (Colossians 1:12 ESV)

The word status also means standing, and it is your position; it has to do with how you are graded, your qualification. So if I ask you what your status is and depending on the context of the situation, you may answer, I am married, a farmer, and a businesswoman or man. Or that you are qualified to be someone or to do something.

I will never forget the day the US immigration stopped me in Washington as we passed through transit on my way to Chile to my sister wedding. I was stopped by an immigration officer who interviewed me about why I was transiting through the US. This was the first time and only time that this happened to me. I believe the reason is that I was wearing a Palestinian scarf that did not even belong to me. But I had every right to be in transit because of the US visa on my passport, and I think it also helped that I told them that I was a student of Theology.

My status changed from being momentarily detained to a free man.

Isn’t this what Paul reminds the Colossians of who they are as he prays for them?

“Giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light.” (Colossians 1:12 ESV)

We are living in a world being qualified to do something is the norm. Yet for me to preach every Sunday I had to obtain theological qualifications from Queen’s University, Union College, Belfast Bible College, and there is nothing wrong with this. But yet, there is another qualification higher than any theological degree to ascertain that you are a Christian.

This is what Paul is telling and praying for, that all of us have been “qualified to share in the inheritance of the saints in light.”

Let us look at this carefully, and I want you to get this. Why? Because there are some of you and outside these walls, even watching online that believe:

“I am not good enough; I am not holy enough. Religion is for good people.”

Let me ask you this: How good is good enough? Can we measure goodness?

Let me put it this way: You and I can never reach God’s demands of holiness, goodness, and perfection. So, to say that we are not good enough, not holy enough is to say that we are damming our fate based on reality.

The Father qualifies us – It is granted, never earned – Which is just as well because since we are all trapped within the dominion of darkness, we have no means of escape to the kingdom of light. It is impossible.

If someone is a follower of Jesus, someone who has given their lives to God and says: I am not good enough, not holy enough! That is saying to Christ what he did for you is not enough for you. He is not sufficient, and if this is false modesty, you need to know it is wrong, not genuine.

Your qualification has been granted by God the Father through Christ, plus you have been given an inheritance, and you know you are sons and daughters of the Kingdom of Light.

“He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.”
(Colossians 1:13–14 ESV)

Christ has met all the qualifications for you to become a Christian, and now you are free from the claws of death and free from sin; you are forgiven. Free from the dominion of darkness, free from judgement,

This marks nothing less than a transfer of cosmic citizenship. In the spiritual realms of the universe, there are no human empires – there is one ultimate battle between darkness and light. This dark dominion makes its presence felt as soon as God’s kingdom surfaces. The last thing it wants is for people to flee and seek asylum in the light.
What Christ did for us gives us complete confidence that we will be loved, accepted, and welcomed.

This is the Gospel.

What a prayer! This is who we are, and we stand on a robust and powerful foundation of cosmic magnitudes. A prayer that is enough to remind us who we are and what we have in Christ.

We can only exercise our authority and power when we know who we are in Christ, the freedom that Christ has brought to us!

“Father, I thank you that I have been set free, that I am forgiven. Father, I come to you with joy and thankfulness, and I rejoice that I no longer belong to the realm and kingdom of darkness, but now I am a son and a daughter of God. Lord, thank you. I am a saint. I am a citizen of the kingdom of light, your kingdom. I ask you to reveal to me your perfect will so that by the guidance of the Holy Spirit, I may walk in your ways, pleasing you, living a life guided by your wisdom and be reminded that the spiritual intelligence that I have received from you, it is for my good and the blessing of others”. Lord, you are all-sufficient, all-powerful, and all-loving”.

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