Our Bible Journaling verse today is 1 Thessalonians 5:17, “pray without ceasing”. Prayer is what helps us keep a firm foundation and a strong relationship in Jesus.
When we are not in constant communication with God, our relationship falters. Just as if a married couple never spoke to one another regularly, the relationship deteriorates. We can’t know how the other feels about something if we never communicate our deepest desires, fears, hopes, and dreams. The same is true with God. Yes, He already knows what is deep in our hearts, but He desires to have that solid relationship with us where we go to Him with everything. When we do that, not only does it bring joy to Him, but we learn more about Him and His character.
Our verse says we are to pray without ceasing. Does that mean we spend 24 hours a day doing nothing else but praying? In the Charles F. Stanley Life Principles Bible, 2nd Edition, NIV, Pastor Stanley says, “First, the apostle did not mean that we should walk around all day mumbling to God. Rather, he taught that we can live in a constant attitude of intercession, even as we go about our daily routines. Of course, some days we’ll pray much more than others. But regardless of the particular items on our “to do” list, we can maintain a natural, ongoing conversation with the Lord that encompasses our whole lives.”
We need to live in this world as light and salt to others. As we go about our day, when God brings something to our remembrance, we are to offer prayer in our hearts for that thing or person God has placed on our hearts. We can do this as we do our daily chores. It doesn’t mean we need to kneel with our eyes closed to be in prayer. We can pray as we drive or do housework. We can pray aloud or silently. We are to be in constant communication with God, so much so, that it becomes second nature to us.
There have been times when I have been in a situation where I came completely to the end of myself because of what was going on, and I just offered up a short, “God, why does this have to be so hard?” It was a conversation I had with Him as I was walking out of my house trying to figure out how to cope. It wasn’t a long, “churchy” prayer filled with flowery language; it was an everyday conversation with God asking for His help. There have been times when I was in the middle of doing a task at work, and the Lord placed a burden on my heart for a friend who was going through a trial. I prayed for them silently as I was doing my work. I didn’t have to stop what I was doing to be in communication with Him, the lines of communication were already open because I was in that attitude of prayer, making God accessible to me and me to Him.
God promises that He will be available to us when we call upon Him. Jeremiah 29:13 says, “You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.” (NASB) His “office” is open continually – it is never closed, and He never turns away a request for a conversation with Him. He desires to talk to us, listen to us, and answer our requests when they fall in line with His will for our lives. There is an old gospel song that says, “Jesus on the mainline, tell Him what you want.” The song goes on to say that we can call Him anytime we want, His line is never busy, if you want His kingdom, tell Him what you want, if you’re sick and want to get well, tell Him what you want, if you’re down and out, tell Him what you want. He is ready, willing, and able to help you with anything heavy on your heart.
He even wants to hear your praise when things go well. He wants to rejoice with you also. That is what a relationship is all about, sharing both the challenging times and the good times. He desires a close relationship with us, and that can only be maintained when we take the time to talk to Him. Pray without ceasing…be in an attitude of prayer constantly to maintain that relationship with the only One who loves us completely.