Now may the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen. (Hebrews 13:20-21 NIV)
As the author of Hebrews brought this letter to a close, he requested prayer for himself and those with him (Heb. 13:18-19) and then offered this prayer to God on behalf of his readers. His prayer for them was short but instructive as we pray each day for ourselves, fellow believers, and the church.
God has a general will for all believers, that we walk with him in holiness and godliness. He also has a specific will for each of us concerning our place of service within his kingdom. The prayer here is that God would equip us with every good thing for doing God’s will. That would include both the material resources, the opportunity, the willingness, and the spiritual gifting necessary to live a life of holiness and to accomplish the task God has given us.
In addition to praying for God’s equipping for service, the author prays that God would work in us what is pleasing to him. The “us” in this likely refers to the church as a whole. That God would be at work within his church, doing within us what pleases him, growing us into a healthy body that would honor him and carry out the commission he has given us (Matt. 28:18-20).
A Prayer for Today
This prayer is desperately needed today. So many believers are satisfied with sitting on the sidelines, doing very little in service for the Lord. And many churches are weak, struggling, and distracted. Pray that God would challenge and equip believers to do his will. And that God would be working within his church to make us into something that would be pleasing to him. These two go hand in hand. God will use faithful believers to accomplish his work with his church. And a growing and healthy church will help to equip believers to be faithful in carrying out God’s will in our lives.