Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Pray Always

"pray without ceasing,"
(1 Thessalonians 5:17, NKJV)

The admonition to pray is actually a command to pray all the time. This text does not mean that we should do nothing but pray rather that prayer should be such an integral part of our life that we find ourselves praying all the time.

It is a good thing to pray at specific times and in an intentional way. Jesus provided us an example of getting alone with God in secret prayer, "… as He was alone praying…" (Luke 9:18). The church is also called to come together in formal prayer with each other. For example Luke records for us in Acts 12:5 that, "Peter was therefore kept in prison, but constant prayer was offered to God for him by the church." The charge to pray always implies that a Christian will also pray spontaneously and so often that our life can be characterized by constant prayer.

The key to constant prayer is constant communion with God. People naturally communicate with each other when they spend time with each other. For example, in your work environment conversation inevitably picks up the longer you are around someone. You may not even really like your coworker but you talk to them because you spend time with them.
Prayer is talking with God. We are given the privilege to talk with Him 24/7. Perhaps what hinders the frequency of our prayer is just the lack of recognizing His presence.

"Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence? If I ascend into heaven, You are there; If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there. If I take the wings of the morning, And dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, Even there Your hand shall lead me, And Your right hand shall hold me." (Psalm 139:7-10, NKJV)

For further reading consider Spurgeon’s sermon on “Pray Without Ceasing” delivered on the Lord’s Day, March 10th, 1872 at the Metropolitan Tabernacle.

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