How often do you pray? Do you think about prayer throughout the day? Or do you forget until you finally take a break? Is it possible to pray at any time during the day no matter what you are doing? In 1 Thessalonians 5, we are told that it is God’s will for us to be praying without ceasing. How do we do that?
Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks;
for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NASB)
PRAYING WITHOUT CEASING
One of my friends tells me that she never says Amen. In other words, there can be a constant dialogue, an open conversation with God. I like that idea, though I still use the word amen at times as it gives closure to a particular prayer.
How are we to pray without ceasing or follow the other commands in that passage to rejoice always and give thanks in everything? Notice that it says, “…for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” That makes all the difference. He has given us His Spirit to be with us always.
GOD’S PRESENCE WITH US
Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast. Psalm 139:7-10
Because God’s presence is with us all the time, we can talk to Him anytime of the day no matter where we are or what we are doing. Knowing that He is with me gives me a great sense of security and peace.
It’s easy to remember to pray when there are problems and we don’t know what to do. But what about giving thanks for even ordinary things as we go through our days?
In chapter 3 of Amy Boucher Pye’s book, 7 Ways to Pray, she suggests that when we first wake in the morning to place our hands on our heart and “affirm, Jesus lives within me.” She has similar suggestions for activities throughout the day.
My days can get rather busy at times and I neglect my special time of reading the Bible and praying. But that doesn’t mean all is lost.
*** To read the rest, please follow this link, Pray Without Ceasing, where I am guest posting for Amy Boucher Pye for her series on prayer.***
10 thoughts on “Praying Without Ceasing: Have Faith and a Thankful Heart”
Yes, God is with us always. I love being able to chat with God at any time. Day or night, He is ready. Whether I am giving praise and thanksgiving or I am weeping with sorrow, the Lord is always with me.
Amen, Melissa! It is such a comfort that we can go to God no matter how we are feeling, and He always hears and answers according to His will. Blessings and love to you, dear Melissa! xo
Gayl, I love the way you bring your creativity to your prayers. Whether it’s a poem, or a sketch, or even a physical reminder, you bless me with your open heart to bring your whole self to the Lord. May I open my heart too! Love and hugs dear sister!
Thank you, dear Bettie! It blesses me to know that I can bless you. You are always an encouragement to me, dear sister. God already knows our hearts, so it’s best to just pour it all out before Him. For there we can find peace and comfort even through the trials. Blessings and love to you, dear poet/sister/friend! xoxo
Gayl: thank you so much for this post and sharing your heart. God used it to bless me so much in His sweet convictions.
He just keeps taking His Word ever deeper, doesn’t He? I edited my poem on my blog some just now, as He led me into returning and resting in Him. I had been reading this post of yours on prayer and it had me thinking about what prayer looks like for me. I realized that my deepest connection with God comes in the listening for His Voice – as I pray the words HE gives me.
But as I sat with that realization, He led me back to my poem on my blog and had me take notice of what I had done to the end of it: let my motives become mixed. Mixed in there was bitterness and pain. I noticed that at the end of the poem there was a switch to a harsh, striving tone, rather than the sweet and gentle call of our Deliverer.
But praise God! He lifted that harshness to bring His gentle Word in HIS praying through me. It is truly HE who opens our hearts to receive His Word, moment by moment to pray in the Spirit and not our flesh. Oh may He continue to grow His heart of prayer in us: His unbroken fellowship with the Father, ever leading us to returning and resting in Him.
Dear Anna, I’m so glad God used this post to bless you! And you bless me in so many ways, too. It’s a beautiful thing how God weaves our lives together even though we are miles and miles apart in location. I think there is a place for that harshness in our prayers, if only to get our thoughts out. In your case, as God worked in your heart you recognized the harshness and He gave you the peace and comfort you needed so that you could end your poem in a more gentle tone. Amen to your prayer that He continue to grow His heart of prayer in us… Blessings and love to you, my dear sister! xo
Thank you for that reminder that all is not lost when we fail to have a special carved-out time during the day. Something that helps when that happens is the very thing you’re writing about here – with talking God throughout the day. I used to be much more of an all or nothing person. If I didn’t have my hour with the Lord, I did feel all was lost. I’ve discovered the goodness in conversation throughout the day, but I desire to grow in this. I’ve tried setting alarms to have more of a habit formed. I think it happens mostly as we grow in our relationship with the Lord, though. May we grow in this!
Thank you for your comments, Amy! I think you’re right that “it happens mostly as we grow in our relationship with the Lord…” Yes, may we continue to grow in this as we more and more learn to “pray without ceasing.” Blessings to you!