Never Cease

I love pandas. They are really cute. This one looks to me like he is praying, so I included him here today. He reminds me of what I need to be doing more and more of.

I feel like I am not alone in forgetting to pray. When I have a problem or feel I am lacking in something, I do everything except pray. The other day I was driving to work on a road we should have been able to go at least 60 mph on and, instead, I was forced to drive down the road at 45-50 mph for over 20 miles. Now, I realize I am in need of patience, however, I informed God that I did not want any lessons on the road this day. Needless to say, I received the memo from heaven that told me, “It’s either His way, or it’s His way.” I tried to say, ‘No thank you’ to the lesson today, but, needless to say again, that did not work.

So, I decided God wanted to slow me down and He wanted me to pray. I did. I spent the extra time on the road going through my list of personal prayers and prayers for family and friends that are so dear to me. I was also able to enjoy a radio teaching about prayer as well and was reminded how Apostle Paul never ceased praying.

“For this reason we also, from the day we heard of it, have not ceased to pray and make [special] request for you, [asking] …”(Colossians 1.9)

I was challenged to wonder if there is there anything in my life I value enough to never cease praying for. I am convicted of my lack of persistence in prayer for loved ones who – years later – still struggle. I know God has not given up on them and I need to remind myself to not give up on them or answers to my own prayers that have gone unanswered for many years.

I read one man’s devotion that said, “The devil is not troubled when … writes books or prepares sermons, but his knobby knees tremble when … prays. The devil does not stutter or stumble when you walk through church doors or attend committee meetings…..But the walls of hell shake when one person with an honest heart and faithful confession prays and also says, “Oh, God, how great Thou art.””

The devil keeps us from prayer. He tries to come between us and God and fill our hearts and minds with doubts and business that hinders us. But he scampers like a spooked dog when we pray. So let’s do.

Let’s pray, first. Traveling to help the hungry? Be sure to bathe your mission in prayer. Working to disentangle the knots of injustice? Pray. Weary with a world of racism and division? So is God. And He would love to talk to you about it.

Let’s pray, most. Did God call us to preach without ceasing? Or teach without ceasing? Or have committee meetings without ceasing? Or sing without ceasing? No, but He did call us to “pray without ceasing.” (1 Thessalonians 5.17)

Let’s pray.

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