Never Stop Praying

Pray without ceasing. What an impossible task this seems! And while it is often said Paul meant we should have an attitude of prayer, I think he also intended for us to pray much more than we do.

 Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you, (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18).

All circumstances. All the time. For the big things and in every little thing. I think Paul would have called it redeeming the time. Making the best use of time we can.

We get caught up in the busyness of life. There’s so much clamoring for our attention, time, and money. Some days it seems we can barely keep up with things. Barely keep our heads above water. And we struggle enough just trying to keep a right attitude over it all, let alone remembering to pray!

“Why don’t the kids keep their stuff picked up?”

That’s the time to pray. If they’re tiny, take them by the hand and teach them to clean up, or if they’re older apply some form of discipline to help them remember. And instead of becoming frustrated, thank God that you have a family to clean up after. And pray for those unable to have children or learning to deal with a newly empty nest.

“How many times have I asked my spouse or room-mate not to do that?”

It’s time to pray. Fix what they did wrong, keeping in mind that you too fall short. Remember to be grateful you’re not alone. And pray for those who live alone, or who have no one at all.

“Oh how I hate grocery shopping. The crowds and decisions.”

Why can’t the cashier be faster, or slower? And why doesn’t she smile once in a while?” Have you thought to pray for her? Or for the grumpy gentleman who just left the store? Perhaps they’re bearing burdens and have no one to talk to. Pray the Lord will send someone their way.

And while you’re at it, thank the Lord you have money for food, and a home to eat it in. And what a great opportunity to pray for those who go without. Those who live in desperate need and grinding poverty.

God surely wants us to stay in a prayerful attitude, and to cultivate real gratitude.

But praying without ceasing also means turning these attitudes into conversation with him.

A daily quiet time is one of the most important aspects of walking with God. Without it we wither up and die. Or at best keep time on a treadmill, never going forward.

Cultivating an ongoing conversation with God can help us remember, in the midst of life’s busyness, to redeem the time.

Paul reminds us the time is short, and that’s why he concludes with “Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ,” (1 Thessalonians 5:23).

The Lord’s coming is near. Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, and give thanks in all circumstances. Constant dialogue with the Lord helps us keep our mind on him.

Do you remember to talk everything over with your Father?

He’s just waiting for your next thought — he never left the conversation in the first place!

[Image ©TheScorziellos]

13 thoughts on “Never Stop Praying

  1. Nice post, Sheila. It seems to be so easy to get self-focused and we forget that others are going through a lot of difficulties that we don’t know about. If we keep our minds in a state of constant prayer, we don’t have the time to be focused on ourselves. Now, if I will just do this!

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    1. I agree Susan. The hardest part is just doing it. I guess what really helped me see this was one day when the Lord asked me, “Do you really want to make your husband feel like a worm over something so stupid?” Don’t even remember about what now. But probably one of those stupid things like a toothpaste cap or something. And then he brought to mind how much my husband has on his heart and mind. Churches we care for, lessons and students, sermons to prepare, work, etc. etc. And I realized it’s no wonder he forgets toothpaste caps and the like. I was ready to berate, instead of praying for him and helping him. I felt like a heel and said “Never again.” And the Lord has been faithful to remind me of this. I now take a deep breath, start to pray, and soon forget all about the toothpaste caps! It’s helped me in so many ways! Focusing on the big picture makes all the difference!

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      1. Very well said Sheila. I have been going through the same experience and thoughts. We almost split up last year over things like leaving the toilet seat up despite my huge signs pinned above it. Now I see him differently as someone who works hard to keep us afloat. And I respect that…still is irritating, but I’ve accepted it.

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      2. Wow, that would have been sad, wouldn’t it? Especially over dumb, but irritating, things like that! I think we women sometimes forget that men are not usually multi-taskers like we are. And they do usually have a lot of responsibilities to juggle. Mario will sometimes ask me how I can manage to write while watching a movie. He can only handle one or the other. Or I’ll start a major housecleaning the day before house guests come. “NOW???” he asks. He’s focused on their arrival, and can’t handle more. Is it any wonder that he forgets toothpaste caps, toilet seats, etc.?? So I finally decided, “OK I am a GREAT multi-tasker. So I’ll just “task” for both of us! lol! It works for us, and keeps us from having major blow-ups over issues not even worth remembering! My husbands feelings and worth are far more valuable! So task away!!

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  2. You came down my street with this post, young lady! I had a full on whining session with Jesus this morning. MANY things are frustrating these days and I had to get it out! Then right after I started to be thankful for what’s going right. The issues haven’t changed YET, but HIS peace settled me and that’s awesome. I just read your post and I had to chuckle. Thanks for sharing this!

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    1. You are more than welcome Vanessa! Oh, and thank you for the young lady! 🙂 It’s funny, because as I was reading your comment, I realized that’s exactly when things do change. When we whine to the Lord about things. Or I guess I should say that’s when he changes US. And once we’re straightened out, everything else just falls into place. The issues may remain the same, yet they are different, aren’t they? I’m glad to know I’m not alone in my struggles, too!

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    1. I’m glad this helped, Vanessa. It’s amazing how the Lord confirms what he’s already spoken to us isn’t it? I guess he knows how hard of hearing we can be!!

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    1. Thanks Tom, it hit home for me too. And in fact, that was one way the Lord helped me with the part of “How many times have I asked my husband not to…”!! He helped me see I was making molehills out of tiny issues, while overlooking the blessing that he is to me everyday, in so many ways! God is so good – he doesn’t want us to live in our mess, but shows practical ways to get out of it. Have a prayerful day!!

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