By Tiffany Deluccia |
“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thess. 5:16-18
Have you ever tried to pray without ceasing? At school, or work, or on vacation, etc… ? I have been thinking about this directive from Paul a lot lately, and I have almost concluded it isn’t something you can will yourself to do. When I try, I fail, distracted within minutes, not to mention, I do have to give my mind’s attention to my work or there’s not much point in showing up.
“Pray without ceasing” is sandwiched between two other directives that I daresay are equally difficult. “Rejoice always,” to start, and “in everything give thanks,” to wrap up. What I’m finding as of late is that these bookends make the middle possible.
An attitude of thanks blesses the Lord in everything. It keeps our focus on His goodness, no matter what we face. It brings our attention back to Him in joy and in sorrow. It knows His soothing voice.
An attitude of thanks causes us to murmur His wonders throughout the day and smile at the good He works for us. It causes us to seek a moment alone with Him when stress invades or sadness floods.
And I find myself praying without ceasing — It doesn’t mean you pray every minute of the day. It means the conversation is never finished; the expectation is that we’ll pick up where we left off, perpetually, wonderfully.
He’s always at our side. Only a cry or a joyful exclamation away.
What do you think about Paul’s instructions in this verse?