March 15, 2024

Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with an attitude of thanksgiving. Conduct yourselves with wisdom toward outsiders, making the most of the opportunity. Colossians 4:2,5

1. BE AN APPRECIATOR. In Colossians, Paul writes about praying with alertness and gratitude. God has opportunities for us – to love people, to walk through open doors of influence, to move mountains – but when we gripe and murmur, it takes us out of our moment of opportunity and into focusing on the negative. Instead of inspecting how big and wonderful God is, we begin an introspection of our own failings. If we shift and begin to appreciate the redemptive hand of God and His amazing, abiding affection and mercy, our expectation rises, and we notice opportunity.

ap·pre·ci·a·tor, noun 
A person who is fully aware of something and understands it.  
2. EXPECT GOOD THINGS. “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28). When my wife was in her later months of pregnancy, she was such a picture of expectancy. Even as a dad, I was expecting and looking forward to another kid coming into my life. Whether we can see them coming or not, we can get excited about the good things God will do in our lives. He is working everything after the counsel of His own will (Ephesians 1:11). So, with the assurance that God is working it all out, we become noticers. We understand and perceive with our heads up and our eyes open; we realize that God is ordering our steps and has a plan for each of our days.

3. DEVOTE YOURSELF TO PRAYER. Whatever season of life you are in, God wants to use you right where you are. Maybe you are stuck at home without a car or because of health reasons and have extra time to pray. I remember an older woman whose husband passed, and she spent the next two years of her life praying 8-10 hours a day until she went to heaven. She made the most of her time with a devotion to prayer that amazingly moved mountains and influenced and impacted lives. We are all in different stages of life and busyness. You may be able to pray only five minutes at a time right now, but God hears and answers your prayer. It’s not the quantity, it’s the quality. Implement it. Devote yourself to it. But always approach it with an attitude of thanksgiving, praying that God would open a door for the Word and that we would make the most of every opportunity.

God, I pray that You will help me make the most of every opportunity I have today. In every interaction, text message, phone call, face-to-face moment with people, and even in my solitude and quiet, help me make the most of my time. I pray a blessing on this day in Jesus’ name, amen.
Press on! 
Pastor Jeff Perry 

Copyright © 2024 St. Louis Family Church, All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995, 2020 by The Lockman Foundation. All rights reserved.  “Appreciator, N.” WordNet 3.0 by Princeton University, 2006, https://www.wordnik.com/words/appreciator.  Accessed 14 March 2024.