How To Actually “Pray Without Ceasing”
For many years, I struggled in my attempts to remember God throughout the day. I was too busy, too distracted, too ignorant, and too inexperienced to know what it was like to commune with God all day long. I would start out well enough in morning devotions and prayer. But, a sense of God’s presence did not remain with me when the day got going.[featured-image single_newwindow=”false”]
How can you begin to commune with God in your every day life? Just a hint – it won’t happen by reading this blog post. It won’t happen by wanting it to happen. It won’t happen by longing for it. It won’t happen by reading a book on how to commune with God 24/7. You will need to learn to commune with God by training yourself over a long period of time. And, of course, your training will only be effective as participate in the grace and life of God flowing in you. I boils down to this. You are able to commune with God throughout the day as you learn to pray from your heart.
But you begin by saying prayers throughout the day. As you continually do this, you begin to notice your heart being drawn into communion with God. Now you’re getting somewhere!
Real Prayers for Real Communion
Here are three prayers that you can say often during the day. Train yourself to commune with God by saying them as often as you’re able.
- Lord Jesus, teach me to pray. This is taken from the disciples’ question to Jesus as they observed him praying.
- Lord, enlighten my darkness. This is an “arrow” prayer (shot to the heart of God) made most prominent by St. Gregory Palamas (14th c.)
- Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner. Known as the Jesus Prayer, this is a theological and personal expression of your relationship with Jesus Christ.
Repeat one or all of these prayers throughout the day. Do this for days, months, and years. You’ll find yourself actually living life in communion with the Triune God.
You’ll also find that you are fulfilling some challenging scriptural exhortations –
- Continue steadfastly in prayer (Colossians 4.2)
- Pray without ceasing (1 Thessalonians 5.17)
- Praying always with all supplication (Ephesians 6.18)
- Lord, teach us to pray (Luke 11.1)
The solution to your desire to commune with God all day long is to learn to pray from the heart. Pray. Pray. And, pray some more. Pray these short prayers. By the grace of God, you will become prayer…and communion will take place.
Which prayer will become “your” prayer today? How about this week? month? year?
Share below your experiences of learning to pray. Comment on your struggles or joys as you learn to pray.