The Apostle Paul’s prayer to the church at Colosse included his interest in providing support for all that they needed to have to be empowered for ministry. It doesn’t appear that he had visited Colosse when he wrote the epistle since he tells Philemon of his hope to visit it upon being freed from prison [see Philemon 1:22]. Some speculate that Epaphras was the founder of the Colossian church [see Colossians 1:7, 4:12].
Paul’s petition in Colossians 1:9-11 can be broken into five phrases that provide insight into what the Holy Spirit wants to inspire into the entire body of believers so that we may be perfect and entire, wanting for nothing [James 1:4].
The Apostle’s prayer in the text is as follows:
 “For this reason we also, from the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to
- ask that you be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;
- that you walk worthy of the Lord, in all pleasing
- being fruitful in every good work
The world is suffering under the weight of an incredible burden brought on by the faltering economy [deceitfulness of riches], the stalled job market, the uptick in productivity brought on by companies forcing too few workers do work that would normally require many more. As a result, we are rushed, sleepless, exhausted and working in every spare moment. The consequence of this is that it carries over into our spiritual lives. Galatians 5:22 states “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance, . . . ” so then we can logically infer that being fruitful in a good work would produce a measure of these. How unfortunate it is that so many members of the body end up spending precious time doing things that produce none of these! How much time is wasted on tasks and activities that are church-based but not Kingdom-based? We do a lot of church work that is not the work of the church.
We are not saved by our works, (see Ephesians 2:7-9) so the work we do must be commissioned by the Lord as we strive to follow his lead. Cain tried to work his way into the kingdom by his work and it bore no fruit, to the contrary it brought forth so much envy of his brother Abel that he murdered him. Look for the fruit of your work and let go of activity that seems stagnant. There’s no wrong in serving where we can, but finding our purpose is of paramount importance. It grounds us as we settle into our place in the body of Christ, doing what we were made to do.
4. and increasing in the knowledge of God