Saturday, April 19, 2008

Pray Without Ceasing

Okay, I'm going to confess something a bit embarrassing. I don't remember exactly how old I was when I did this, but I'm guessing 10? 11? Somewhere in there. I'd love to say that I was 3 or 4. Then it wouldn't be as embarrassing. Oh, well.

I remember lying in bed one night. I even remember how my room was arranged when it happened, the head of my bed was against the wall that my door was on. Anyway, I started praying. It didn't take long for my mind to drift elsewhere, so I started over. And I do mean started over! I don't remember what I was praying for but I remember starting back at the beginning each time my mind wandered. Why you ask? Because I had just learned this verse...

I Thessalonians 5:17 "Pray without ceasing." (KJV)

I wish I was joking but I thought that meant that my prayer could not stop and start. Each time my prayer was interrupted it was no good. Ruined. Back to the beginning. I didn't get a lot prayed for that night. I did ask my Mom about it, I think I got so frustrated that I got out of bed to go ask her. So it was only one night that I wrestled with this dilemma.

All these years later though, I'm still working on praying without ceasing. So, here's what I'm learning now.

I used to be, ha!, I am a mumbler. Gary, if you don't know this then you really just don't pay any attention to me, do you? A few years ago, God greatly convicted me of this. I was behaving as if it were alright to say anything I wanted as long as it was under my breath and no one really heard it. Oh, yes. God had something to say about that. I couldn't get away with mumbling anymore. In addition to all the anger that I had when I started to mumble, I would be flooded with pangs of guilt over what I was mumbling. And I thank God for that blessing because it turned my mumbling into a conversation with God.

I have found that God helped me not to stop mumbling, but to start mumbling to Him. I am humbled by the relationship He wants to have with me.

Think about it. Prayer is conversation with Him. He wants us to be in conversation with Him continuously! I don't love anyone that much!!! I can't imagine a love as pure and deep as we have with our children...but kids, please don't talk to me without ceasing!!!!

"Pray without ceasing." That's love.