In his closing commands to the church in Thessalonica, Paul includes this:
…pray without ceasing, – 1 Thessalonians 5:17
Prayer is the very life-breath of the Christian. Jesus in John 15 told his disciples that he chose them to go and produce fruit that lasts so that they could pray and ask for that production of fruit.
You need to think about what Jesus said there. Here it is to read and stew on for a minute:
You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you. – John 15:16
We are given a mission so we could pray and have the Father give it. If that is the case, then prayer is truly our life-breath, and we can’t afford to not be praying.
But we can’t spend every day in a hideaway sequestered in prayer. I don’t believe the “monk” life is a life on mission. We must pursue Jesus’ mission as we execute our vocations, so how do we pray without ceasing in order to get the fruit of the mission?
There is one way: Take advantage of every spare moment to talk to the Lord Jesus, ask his help and guidance, and give him thanks.
For example, Saturday I was driving the hour-long trip to John Mark’s wrestling tournament, and as I traversed the back roads to Murray County High School, it was quiet and beautiful, and I simply spent that time asking, seeking, and knocking. Was it the most intense time of prayer I’ve ever spent? No. Was it effective? You bet it was. Not because I’m a good prayer, but because God is faithful to hear when we call to him and speak to us when we listen.
Therefore, take advantage of every spare moment to call on the Lord, and thus fulfill the command to pray without ceasing but more importantly, meet with the Lord and have our spiritual vitality fueled for our good and God’s glory at all points in our day.