Im Rahmen meines CW-Lese-Projektes bin ich auf einige Ausführungen zum Gebetsdienst des Epaphras, eines Mitarbeiters des Apostels Paulus, gestoßen, die mich sehr angesprochen haben und ich frage mich, wie es um die Gemeinde (= Versammlung/Kirche) bestellt wäre, wenn jeder Christ den Dienst des Gebetes auch nur halb so ernst nähme, wie Epaphras dies tat:
„Epaphras entered as much as was possible into the mind of God about service – as much as Paul did. „Continue in prayer“ &c. (Col. 4: 2); making the effect of his ministry hang upon their prayers. Apostle as he was, it might have been thought he could not need prayer. Here is the zeal of a man, perhaps lying on his face all day – no great zeal it might be said, but having the muster-roll of God’s saints before him; feeling wearied perhaps – but no, there’s another and another of God’s saints I must pray for. This was the particular path of Epaphras (perhaps Epaphroditus the same). We do not find him standing in any other place of service but this; labouring that the saints might be perfect and complete in all the will of God. It may be that in which we are most lacking – no eye but God’s – courts no public praise – no bustle – no activities – is like the fibre to the root of the plant. „Rejoice evermore; pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks.“ Closer connection between these three than our souls are wont to acknowledge. Joy will ever rise in proportion to prayer and thanksgiving.“¹
¹= Letters of JND, Vol. I (1832 – 1868), H. L. Heijkoop, Reprint 1971, S. 35 – 35
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