August 4, 2008 Ration
I Thessalonians 5:25
Brothers, pray for us.
With all that is beautiful, pleasing, enjoyable, desirous, and has influence on our spirit, body, and soul through the arts, I say too: Brothers, pray for us!
Paul, who knew God unlike any other, is the one who pleaded, Brothers, pray for us. Paul, who new the beauties, pleasures, joys, intense desire for, and the reality of the range of results in his gig of proclaiming the gospel is the one who said, Brothers, pray for us. Why would one so strong in his faith ask for prayer from a people to whom he is writing with hopes to establish and exhort [them in their] faith (3:2)? Isnt Paul the strong one? Why is Paul calling for the brothers prayers?
Paul is only strong because he knows exactly how weak he is, and he knows exactly who is his strength. Do you want to find the strong man? Listen then for the one who asks for your prayers to God on his behalf.
One reason that I say, brothers, pray for us (pray for me), in this theater of the arts is because I know that as long as I am in this body, I will be tempted to enjoy all things pleasurable in a destructive manner. This is the strength of the flesh. It naturally gets stronger and stronger in its corruptive ways. Its heart naturally gets harder and harder in its affections. Its desires naturally descend into a tighter selfish spiral. Brothers, pray for us that we would put to death our flesh in our incredibly pleasurable, God-given labors in the arts. To finish our leg of the race faithfully, we need the prayers of the brothers.
Another reason is this: I do not have it within or about me to accomplish all that my mind is inspired to do. I am insufficient in myself. I need the help of the other parts of the body. And it turns out that the other parts of the body are in need of me. This is Gods intent and design. As it is with our greatest necessity (God delivering on our righteousness), so it is with our lesser necessities (God delivering on what He bids us to do). Which is exactly why I take great confidence in soliciting: brothers, pray to God for us! God who calls for our righteousness has accomplished our righteousness through His Son, and it is God who gives us a particular gig in this life who will accomplish what He bids us to do.
So brothers, pray for us like this: Now, may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is faithful; He will surely do it (5:23-24).
Brother artists, pray for us. Pray for each other. Pray that we would be full of faith, full of humility, full of courage, full of gentleness, full of truth, full of grace, full of the Holy Spirit, full of inspiration, full of articulation, full of skill, full of perseverance, full of endurance, full of generosity, full of zeal, full of dependence on God for what He bids, that we may be full of joy in God so that our artistic expressions may be full of edification for all who need them.
Brothers, earnestly pray for us!
© 2008 The Gaius Project