I, Paul, add this final greeting, writing with my own hand. Remember I am still in prison and in chains. May grace be with you! Amen (so be it). Colossians 4:18 Amplified
And at the same time pray for us also, that God may open a door to us for the Word (the Gospel), to proclaim the mystery concerning Christ on account of which I am in prison; Colossians 4:3 Amplified
Paul prayed for the chance to witness to people in prison. Oh my. Now I feel like total scum! But honestly, when I read that, I couldn't believe it. The dedication, the single-mindedness, the love this man had for the Lord! Nothing else mattered, but obeying God and winning souls, not even Paul's personal comfort. That's the measure of a true disciple, isn't it?
Then Jesus said to His disciples, If anyone desires to be My disciple, let him deny himself [disregard, lose sight of, and forget himself and his own interests] and take up his cross and follow Me Matt 16:24
You may never be thrown in a physical prison, but we all get tossed in life's prisons now and then. Job loss, money problems, health issues, children problems, death, abandonment, rejection, heartache.. life can certainly pile up on us sometimes, can't it? So much so, it feels like we are in a dank, dark, dungeon. And inevitably when that happens, we cry out to God to rescue us. Now, I'm not saying that's a bad thing. God doesn't fault us for prayers like that. But what if the next time the world is crashing down around us, we look up instead and say "Use these circumstances, Lord, use these problems, to bring others to You."