Pray diligently. Stay alert, with your eyes wide open in gratitude. Don’t forget to pray for us, that God will open doors for telling the mystery of Christ.
Colossians 4:2,3 (The Message)
Be “watchful.” We don’t use the word every day in our speech, so it is worth meditating on “watchful.” If you were heading out on a military assignment and were instructed to “be watchful” you would ask your commander what you should be looking for. First, I do not think that Paul is advocating a frenzy of paranoia.
“Always be watchful and thankful.” Watchfulness is about good things and potentially bad things. “Stay alert, with your eyes wide open in gratitude.” I believe that while we need to be alert for both good and bad, coupling alertness with thankfulness affirms the sovereignty of God. We should also be alert to internal and external factors too. Perhaps the greatest internal hazard for the household of God is disunity. Distrust, negative thoughts about others, assuming the worst instead of the best… these are cause to have “eyes wide open.” Thankfulness for others in the Body of Christ can be an antidote.
Spend a lot of time in prayer. Always be watchful and thankful. Pray for us too. Pray that God will open a door for our message. New International Reader’s Version.
Open eyes with an open heart lead to open doors. “And pray for us too, that God may open a door for our message.” Keep your eyes open for opportunities that exist already. Ask God to show them to you, and thank him for them. Then pray for new opportunities to open; knock on doors in prayer until they open. Prayer opens doors. While there is a general demand for the benefits of the gospel, doors to individuals, to households, to departments, to local churches, and to cities are often opened one at a time in prayer.
Open eyes: be watchful.
Open hearts: be thankful.
Open doors: be prayerful… not in some ponderous, wistful way, but in an urgent, bang-the-door-down kind of way… “so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ.” God is expanding our horizons: be watchful and thankful… and be a door opener.