17 Pray without ceasing.
What is prayer? Prayer is the reverential, worshipful communication of a genuine believer with God. It allows him to affirm his faith and confidence in the Triune God, to give thanks for the blessings received, to confess his sins, to consecrate his life to do the divine will concerning him and serve Him, to submit his petitions and pleadings for divine help in his needs and trials, etc. Prayer opens the door for him to flee from temptations and trials into the refuge of God’s glorious presence. It grants the praying man immediate access to the source of comfort, wisdom, strength and peace.
All believers are enjoined to pray “without ceasing”. That does not mean that we are to spend all our time just praying and doing nothing else. Rather, it is a call to always maintain a trusting, submissive, worshipful spirit before God, no matter what we do. Though there are special occasions or seasons of prayer, we must keep a prayerful spirit all the time. An abiding spirit of prayer will keep us spiritually minded in all circumstances of life. It will keep us God-focused in all our endeavours. It will also prevent us from doing those things which cannot be presented to God with all pure conscience. Conversely, not enduring in a prayerful spirit would leave us open to all kinds of spiritual dangers. Hence, habitual prayer is both a promoter and protector of a godly life; without prayer, it is impossible to maintain a fruitful, godly life.
In addition, steadfastness in prayer would afford the believer unobstructed communion with God. Unfortunately, most people are not even careful to pray at fixed times. Many pray only when they are in trouble or when their feelings are unusually excited. It is lamentable that most Christians lack steadfastness in prayer!
Lack of enduring prayer is a sign of a wandering or backsliding mind. Prayerlessness is an indication of a mind preoccupied with sensual and material thoughts.
Is God habitually in our thoughts? Do we adore and trust Him all through the day? Do we wholly consecrate our thoughts and passions to be sanctified and filled with His good will? Do we yield our minds and our hands to promote His glory? Unceasing prayer requires an unabated, all-pervasive consecration to the glory of God. To pray without ceasing will need a full fascination with God’s glory.