National Day of Prayer: Pray Without Ceasing
The seemingly irreversible state of world affairs is often the topic as I interact with Christians in North America. Although the Bible predicts the Last Days will be characterized by evil and perilous times, we must not succumb to hand-wringing or be paralyzed by fear with reports of terrorism and persecution.
There is one essential activity in which all Christians can and must engage.
“Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving . . .” (Col.4:2).
Two words stand out in the apostle Paul’s teaching that communicate the need for prayer in light of challenges in the 21st century.
- The first word translated “continue” (proskartereō) conveys the concept of devotion or dedication. Christians must give unwavering and persevering attention to prayer. Time spent in prayer is essential to victorious Christian living. Paul instructed the Thessalonian church to, “pray without ceasing” (1 Th. 5:17).
- The second word translated “vigilant” (grēgoreō) denotes conversation, not rote activity. Prayer requires that Christians be alert, engaged, focused and informed.
Persistent focused prayer is also characterized by thanksgiving, which demonstrates authentic faith. Our prayers should thank God for what He has already done and anticipate what He will do in answer to our petitions.
Christians are not left to numb disillusionment or hopeless despair. We have the privileged opportunity of approaching the God of creation in prayer—at any moment—in any place. No detail is too small or any problem too great.
On this National Day of Prayer, make a commitment to designate time for prayer. Encourage others to join you for both scheduled and spontaneous moments to pray for the challenges we face today. And then, rest in the assurance that God is working on your behalf!
1) Pray Without Ceasing. (Photo credit: Courtesy Pixabay/[Public domain]/Enhancement, MKM Portfolios)
Copyright © Charles E. McCracken 2016, devotional comments only. Repost/Reprint with permission from the author. Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.