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Shield Daily Devotional  

Day 172

Do you desire to pray without ceasing? Does your heart crave this type of prayer life? If so, I want you to know that it is within your reach. God wants us to be a praying people; a people that are in constant communion with Him. This is true even when our minds are focused on some daily labor. 1 Thessalonians 5:17 is our explains our duty: "Pray without ceasing."

William Burkitt explains this verse as follows: "That frequent and constant prayer to God, is a duty required of all Christians; we are then said to do a thing continually, when we do it seasonably, when we pray at stated times, morning and evening every day, when upon extraordinary occasions we perform the duty in an extraordinary manner, and when we perform it with unfainting perseverance, both frequently and fervently, though we receive no present answer to our prayers; and in a word, when the heat is always kept in a praying frame, this is to pray continually; and the reason for it is, because we stand in continual need of God, we want him continually, we sin against him continually, we are surrounded with temptations continually, we are exposed to trouble and affliction continually, and we ought to glorify God continually; and if so, we must pray continually; not that a man should do nothing else but pray; for though we may do nothing without prayer, yet we must do many things besides praying."

Burkitt emphasizes that to do something (i.e. prayer) at the appropriate time is to do it continually. We all should have stated times of prayer, e.g. morning devotions. However, we should also pray before meals (yes; even in public) and in the evening before bed. Family prayer is to be encouraged as children are never too young to see their parents pray. In addition, throughout the day we should pray as the circumstances permit always ready to hear from the Lord. Prayer is more than you talking to God; it includes talking but it also includes times of silence just waiting before Him. Today as you go about the business of the day, stop and have moments of quiet reflection. This is not emptying your mind like a eastern meditation, it is a time of quiet reflection upon your Heavenly Father. Stop and enjoy His presence today.
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