As we come to the last section of Paul’s letter to the Colossians (4:7-18), he includes some final greetings from his friends and co-workers to the church in Colossae. Each one of them has a story to tell, though none of them ever becomes famous like Paul. There are a few names we recognize, like Mark and Luke and Onesimus. But for most of them, their passing mention at the end of this letter IS their fifteen minutes of fame.
And look at the terms Paul uses to describe them: dear brother, faithful minister, fellow servant in the Lord, fellow prisoner (remember, Paul’s in a Roman prison), dear friend, etc. He mentions Epaphras who is “always wrestling in prayer for you, that you may stand firm in all the will of God, mature, and fully assured (Colossians 4:12).”
Though the Apostle Paul is called a “saint” and has cathedrals, universities, and hospitals named after him, he knew that he was only one person on a great team. You may recall when he began his letter: “… All over the world this gospel is bearing fruit and growing, just as it has been doing among you since the day you heard it and understood God’s grace in all its truth (Colossians 1:6, NIV).”
Paul certainly hadn’t been “all over the world” himself…and he even mentions in 1:7 that it was Epaphras who led the Colossians to the Lord in the first place.
The point is simple: The Kingdom of God expands when WE ALL play the role we’ve been called to play. So, whether you are a prayer warrior, a faithful minister, a fellow prisoner, or simply a dear brother/friend “…See to it that you complete the work you have received in the Lord (Colossians 4:17, NIV).”