The heart of the righteous weighs its answers,
but the mouth of the wicked gushes evil.
The thoughts, the words, and the deeds of the wicked are detestable to God. However witty they may consider themselves, however clever and fashionable they may seem to themselves, even how right they believe they may be, their behavior is odorous to God who will not be mocked. The great illusion of the wicked is that they believe they are getting away with their schemes. “There is no god,” they say to themselves as fools. Pray now that they will learn the reality and power of God while there is time to be saved. Pray for your neighbors, family, and colleagues who reject Christ.
And pray for your own words to be gracious to them and to your spiritual family. Colossians 4:5-6 says, “Conduct yourselves wisely toward outsiders, making the best use of the time. Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.” For your words to be gracious, you must be a person who lives under the grace of God, whose heart is transformed by grace. Your words and thoughts only reveal your heart. That is why the wicked, no matter what they think or say, cannot please God. Study God’s grace; study what it is to live under grace and to be a person of grace; pray for God’s grace to be manifested in your life.
For this reason I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for the sake of you Gentiles—
2 Surely you have heard about the administration of God’s grace that was given to me for you, 3 that is, the mystery made known to me by revelation, as I have already written briefly. 4 In reading this, then, you will be able to understand my insight into the mystery of Christ, 5 which was not made known to people in other generations as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to God’s holy apostles and prophets. 6 This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus.
7 I became a servant of this gospel by the gift of God’s grace given me through the working of his power. 8 Although I am less than the least of all the Lord’s people, this grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles the boundless riches of Christ, 9 and to make plain to everyone the administration of this mystery, which for ages past was kept hidden in God, who created all things. 10 His intent was that now, through the church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms, 11 according to his eternal purpose that he accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord. 12 In him and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence. 13 I ask you, therefore, not to be discouraged because of my sufferings for you, which are your glory.
A Prayer for the Ephesians
14 For this reason I kneel before the Father, 15 from whom every family[a] in heaven and on earth derives its name. 16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.