“Pray without ceasing”
(1 Thessalonians 5:17)
Paul’s command to “pray without ceasing,” can be confusing for some, but so vitally important in these perilous times in which live and are entering into. Obviously, it cannot mean we are to be in a head-bowed, eyes-closed posture all day long. Paul is not referring to non-stop talking, but rather to an attitude of “God-consciousness” and “God-surrender” that we carry with us all the time, and throughout the entire day. Every waking moment is to be lived in an awareness that God is with us and that He is actively involved and engaged in our thoughts and actions ….
When our thoughts should become anxious and turn to worry, fear, doubt, discouragement, or anger; we are to consciously and quickly turn every thought into prayer and every prayer into thanksgiving …
In his letter to the Philippians, Paul commands us to stop being anxious and instead, “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God”.. (Phillipians 4:6). And the result of this obedience?? “the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” (v.7)
He taught the believers at Colossae to devote themselves to always “continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving” (Colossians 4:2). Paul also exhorted the Ephesian believers to see prayer as a weapon to use in fighting spiritual battles; “praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.” (Ephesians 6:18). Notice the key word: “always” …..
As we go through the day; prayer should be our first response to every fearful situation, every anxious thought, and every undesired task that God commands. A lack of prayer will cause us to depend on ourselves instead of depending on God’s grace. Unceasing prayer is, in essence, continual dependence upon and communion with the Father at all times and in every circumstance and situation, just as it says in (Phillipians 4:6), “in everything” and always give thanks ….
For Christians, prayer should be like breathing. You do not have to think to breathe because scientifically the atmosphere exerts pressure on your lungs and essentially forces you to breathe. That is why it is more difficult to hold your breath than it is to breathe. Howver “spiritually” every single breath we inhale or exhale is because God has graced us with it and it is by His power that we are able to do so …. Similarly, when we are born into the family of God, we enter into a spiritual atmosphere where God’s presence and grace exert pressure, or influence, on our lives. Prayer is the normal response to that pressure. As believers, we have all entered the divine atmosphere to breathe the air of prayer ….
Unfortunately, many believers hold their “spiritual breath” for long periods, thinking brief moments with God are sufficient to allow them to survive. But such restricting of their spiritual intake is caused by sinful desires of our flesh. The true fact is; that every believer must be continually in the presence of God, constantly breathing in His truths, to be fully functional and to be empowered to make it through and be victorious. Oh sure, you may be thinking, “I make it through each day just fine with my prayers” …. but I ask you: are you just getting by or are you victorious? There’s a vast difference in merely existing as opposed to living ….
It is easier for Christians to feel secure by “presuming on” ~ instead of “depending on” ~ God’s grace.
Too many believers simply become satisfied with physical blessings and have little desire for spiritual ones. Even the devil can bless you. Bet you didn’t know that, huh? He can easily give you money, riches, fame, fortune; just look at all that he offered and tempted Jesus with in the wilderness (Matthew 4:1-11). When programs, methods, and money produce impressive results, there is an inclination to confuse human success with divine blessing. When that happens, passionate longing for God and yearning for His help will be missing. Continual, persistent, incessant prayer is an essential part of Christian living and flows out of humility and dependence on God ….
Therefore, I challenge you to look to more consistent prayer this week. Be more mindful of the day; and all of the opportunities that you have to pray, to thank, to praise, to be grateful, and simply to acknowledge Him. You actually have 86,400 seconds ….1 day has 24 hours; 1 hour have 60 minutes; and 1 minute has 60 seconds, therefore; 86,400 seconds are given us each and every 24 hours of our day …. Wow, just ponder the depth of that a moment; and think about how many breaths we probably draw in every one of those seconds …. Mind blowing isn’t it?
Let us pray ~
Dear Lord Jesus, what a privilege we have as Your blood-bought children to be able to enter Your throne-room of grace and bring our prayers and petitions right into Your very presence ~ through our Lord Jesus Christ; so please Father God, teach me to pray ~ teach me to pray Lord ….
My heart longs to pray in the way that is pleasing to You Father, so that my prayers are both powerful and effective. I want to know You better so that I may know Your will, in order that I may pray into Your perfect plans and purposes, not only in my own life and the lives of those that I love, but also in a world where lost men, women, and children are dying and souls are in despair. Lord, I understand that only as I abide in You and rest my weary soul in Your loving arms, by submitting to Your Holy Spirit, day by day in spirit and in truth, will my prayers and pleadings accomplish wonderful results that are honouring to You.
Teach me Your will I pray, through Your Word – and may Your guiding Holy Spirit turn the thoughts of my heart towards those things that You have planned and purposed … that I may truly pray into You will and that Your name may be glorified in my humble supplications.
Teach me day by day to pray as I ought, in Jesus name I pray, Amen …..
“In ALL thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.”
God is with us …..