“…pray continually…” 1 Thessalonians 5:17
We’ve been looking at 4 Prayer that Jesus prayed during our Sunday morning worship and if you’ve not been able to join us in-person for worship, or live online, go back and check out our services either on Facebook or YouTube - and if you haven’t already, hit that subscribe button. It’s a simple but powerful way to help us Welcome people to grow in Jesus!
Back to prayer though… which is often how prayer works, right? We start to pray, we turn our attention to God, and then something jumps to our attention, our mind wanders, and the next thing we know we’re reminiscing about the Steelers game or that delicious meal or that funny joke our neighbor told. Having a conversation (which is all prayer is), with the God who’s with us but we don’t see or hear in the same way we do with our friend, isn’t always easy work. And sometimes, or maybe often, it gets crowed out by other, seemingly more important duties and tasks.
It reminds me of two stories I read recently, in a book by Anthony De Mello:
An efficiency expert was making his report to Henry Ford. “As you will see, sir, the report is highly favorable, except for that man down the hall. Every time I pass by he’s sitting with his feet on his desk. He’s wasting your money.”
Said Ford, “That man once had an idea that earned us a fortune. At the time I believe his feet were exactly where they are now.”
There was an exhausted woodcutter who kept wasting time and energy chopping wood with a blunt ax because he did not have the time, he said, to stop and sharpen the blade.
Prayer doesn’t look very functional. Talking with God doesn’t get the widget made, the bid submitted, or the sale finalized any quicker. Prayer can seem, by all accounts, to be the kind of think that you just don’t have time for. And yet… it’s much more likely that we when we fail to take a moment aside from our “work” to simply talk with God, that we’re wasting our time, working with a blunt ax, instead of successfully moving forward with a sharpened sword!
The Apostle Paul doesn’t tell us when best to pray - morning, noon, night - at meals, at bedtime, when in the car, at our desk, walking or working out - he doesn’t specify. He simply says to pray continually. If that means stopping what we’re doing to talk with God, we might find ourselves more effective if we do. If it means praying while we’re engaged in other activities, we may find we’re more alert to our tasks that we would be otherwise.
There is value in prayer, even if it doesn’t look so to the outside observer. I hope you’ll see the value and receive the value as you spend time talking with God!
Welcoming you to Grow - in prayer & in Jesus,