In his book, A Call to Spiritual Reformation, D. A. Carson examines several of the Apostle Paul’s prayers and encourages us to align our own prayer life with Paul’s theology, priorities, and practices. One petition Dr. Carson works through in his book is Paul’s prayer for the Christians in Thessalonica found in 2 Thessalonians 1:11-12 (“Worthy Petitions,” Chpt. 3). From this chapter, I have adapted a prayer that I regularly pray for my own family. I want my intercession for those I love best to reflect the Savior’s priorities for them. This prayer helps me do just that.
Father, I pray today that you may count us worthy of your calling. Enable us to become increasingly holy, self-denying, loving, full of integrity, steeped in the knowledge of you and your Word, ever delighted and eager to trust and obey you. We are not strong enough or disciplined enough to live up to your calling on our own. But I ask that you will so work in our lives that we may grow in all things that please you so that you ultimately judge us to be living up to the calling that we have received. Help us to establish and pursue only those plans, goals, and purposes that are in keeping with your will and intent for our lives and by your power cause every good purpose and faith-prompted act of ours to bear abundant fruit. I pray this so that the name of the Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in our lives and our lives in Him. Lord Jesus, thank you that you are transforming us into your likeness with ever increasing glory by your marvelous grace. It is only by your grace that we can become fruitful. It is only by your grace that we can persevere. It is only by your grace that we can mature. It is your grace that enables us to love others more. It is your grace that enables us to cherish holiness and a deepening knowledge of God. Therefore I ask all these things on the basis of your grace.