June 25, 2007

Pray Continually

1 Thessalonians 5:12-22

Pray continually ... for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:17-18


Prayer is a part of every Christian's life. Without prayer we lose touch with God and cease to know him. Is it any wonder, then, that Paul instructs us to pray continually?

How does one find a way to devote significant time to prayer--and, even more, to pray continually? Perhaps continual prayer is not merely the time spent on one's knees but a continuing, ongoing intimacy with God. When we stop thinking about prayer as a specific activity and begin to understand that prayer is a way of life, we can begin to grasp what continual prayer might be.

God is available not only in certain places at specific times. No matter where we are or what we are doing, God is there with us. For some, the awareness of an ever-present God is intimidating. We may sometimes wish that God was not watching everything we do--but he is. God is present because he loves and cares for us. Like a mother who always keeps an eye on her child and is ready to respond immediately, so our God is with us always.

Not only is God with us--watching, caring, and protecting--but God listens and speaks to us. That's why we can confidently seize the invitation to pray continually. Living in God's presence is a gift to be appreciated and cherished.

Lord God, thank you that no matter what the situation or circumstances, we have the assurance that you are with us and that you are always listening. In Jesus' name, Amen.

About the author — Jerry Dykstra

Pastor Jerry Dykstra was recently appointed as the executive director of the Christian Reformed Church in North America. After a 15-year career in business, he trained for pastoral ministry and served as the pastor of Cascade Fellowship CRC, Cascade, Michigan, and Faith Christian Fellowship CRC, Walnut Creek, California. He and his wife, Linda, live in Byron Center, Michigan, and have three children and seven grandchildren.

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