Devote yourselves to prayer; stay alert in it with thanksgiving.
This is simply some of the best advice in the history of the human race.
It is typically best, if possible, to have a set time and place daily for devoted prayer.
To stay alert, make sure you do your best to maintain focus on God, the One with whom you’re speaking, more than on what you’re saying. That has been a huge help to me.
Gratitude should be a part of every part of your life. God designed your brain to be healthy when in gratitude. We’re just now showing this to be true scientifically….as if we needed that kind of proof.
And tell Archippus, “Pay attention to the ministry you have received in the Lord, so that you can accomplish it.”
I love this translation. We’ve all been given a ministry. You are in some unique position, like no one else on the planet, to minister God’s goodness to someone in your life—someone who has no other channel of Christ like the one they have in you.
Pay attention to it.
Sometimes it’s that simple. Just paying attention. So that God can accomplish a really good work…through you.
Warren Wiersbe’s pithy comments with regard to Archippus are inspiring:
Since the Lord gave him his ministry, the Lord could also help him carry it out in the right way. Ministry is not something we do for God; it is something God does in and through us.
We are able to fulfill our ministries because we have been “filled full” through Jesus Christ.
We usually don’t have to go looking around for ways to get involved in ministry; for something to do for God.
Rather we need to simply listen to what God is asking of us. This is done, at least in part, by paying close attention to what is going on right around us and saying, “OK.”