pray without ceasing...

Did you know that every day, from the moment our eyes open in the morning until they close again at night, we are engaged in spiritual warfare? Every day, we will face challenges and temptations that are probably beyond our human ability to overcome. Life would certainly be a hopeless battle if we did not believe that we could have victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.  So how do we live in the victory that Jesus purchased for us on the cross?


Well, I believe  that when we are faced with a challenge, the most important thing we can do is simply ask for help!!  That seems like such a simplistic answer, but I believe that often we live at a lower level than we are called to simply because we do not ask God to help us.  When we are in relationship with God through His son Jesus Christ, the Bible says that we can pray in Jesus' name and instantly have access to supernatural power. That doesn't mean that we will receive whatever we pray for, but it does mean that all the possibilities of heaven become possible in our lives!


If only we really believed that! So often we get discouraged when we don't see immediate answers. Cultivating a life of prayer, however,  is not about receiving answers, its about having a continual conversation with the Lord. Prayer is about learning to hear His voice. Its about allowing God's heart to change our hearts so that His desires become our desires. When we are praying in agreement with God's Word and in alignment with His perfect will and timing, then we truly can expect miracles!! 


Paul encouraged us in  I Thessalonians 5:17 to "pray without ceasing", and James 5:16 says that, "The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much."…..Jesus Himself said in John 16:24, " Ask and you will receive that your joy may be full." Paul knew it, James knew it, and Jesus knew it - prayer changes things!!    God hears us when we call, and our words in prayer are more powerful than we realize!


Prayer is the key to seeing change where God's kingdom has not yet come on earth, and I have seen prayers bring His kingdom to earth time and time again. But as much I as I know how important prayer is, I sometimes struggle to live in that state of praying without ceasing.   The devil will try anything and everything to keep you and I from praying! So often I get up in the morning with every intention of spending a good amount of time in prayer. And sure enough, distractions  come from every direction to keep me from conversing with the Lord!  


With the age of the internet and the smartphone, distractions and temptations are constant unless we decisively choose to create undistracted time with God.  For me this takes great discipline, and I don't always succeed. But I know that many times, I walk around lacking, discouraged, and feeling pressed down simply because I have not made time to ask God for help!


Prayer is so simple! Anyone can do it. Prayer is simply telling God where we need Him and asking Him for help. Satan desperately does not want us to ASK because he knows that we have access to the Father if we are in Christ, and he does not!!  If only we would realize how much God would gladly bless us if we would simply ask!!! Doesn't God bless us without prayer? Well, God's love is certainly not contingent on our prayers, but I believe prayer allows us to access the fullest benefits of His love. Remember that  prayer is not about the answer but  rather about how we are changed in the process of praying.  Its not the world that needs transformation as much as it is we ourselves. Prayer connects us with the love of God which transforms us more and more into the image of Christ.   As the spirit of God grows inside us, His faith grows inside us.  And only when HIs faith is present do miracles happen.   


Are you feeling encouraged to make prayer a bigger priority in your life? I know I am!   I want my human faith to be replaced with His. I want so much of Jesus to live in me that strongholds would fall without me saying a word.  I need His faith to believe that  miracles are indeed possible in my life! Through prayer,  all things become possible if we will only take the time to ask and  keep on asking until we see God;s answer formed in us…whatever that answer may be. 


Father, I thank you that we have access to you through your son, Jesus,  who died for us on the cross. Thank you that you hear us when we call.  Thank you that  whatever  we ask in prayer, believing, we will receive. Lord,  we ask you to make us a people of prayer.  Teach us how to pray without ceasing. Bring Your kingdom in us and through us, we pray! In Jesus' name, amen.


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