11th May 2017

Pray Without Ceasing!

“One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he had finished, one of his disciples said to him, ‘Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.’”
Luke 11:1 (NIV)

The Lord’s Prayer follows this request; and he began by saying, “When you pray say, ‘Father.’” When we call God Father, we are expressing our total reliance, our utter dependence on him, just as Jesus did! If we listen to the prayers of Jesus we will learn this secret—his total dependence on the One who had sent him to earth with a mission. So he prayed without ceasing and the reason he did was because he understood his great need of the Father’s strength in order to accomplish his reason for being here on planet earth. He told the Jews who were persecuting him, “By myself I can do nothing; I judge only as I hear, and my judgment is just, for I seek not to please myself but him who sent me” (John 5:30).

The lifestyle of our Saviour was busy beyond comprehension. He was subjected to continual interruptions, resisted by foes, hassled and harried, yet he continued to keep in contact with God. Every situation in his life was an occasion for prayer. Before feeding the 5,000, he held five pieces of barley bread and two fish in his hands, and notice what he does next—Jesus took the bread and gave thanks to God and did the same with the fish. He not only fed that great multitude ,but had the disciples gather up the leftovers which filled twelve baskets! (John 6:1-13)

Before he called Lazarus out of his tomb after four days, he spoke to his Father. He said “‘Father, I thank you that you have heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me.’ When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice. ‘Lazarus, come out!’ The dead man came out…” (John 11:41-44).

So, we see in Jesus a quiet continual reliance upon his Father. His life was a life of constant prayer to the Father who always heard him. What a great example for us who are his followers to emulate his life of quiet and continual reliance on the Power of the universe so that we too can fulfil the very purpose of our being—to reflect the love and grace of our Father.

Paul has some encouraging and wise words for us, he says, “Be cheerful no matter what; pray all the time; thank God no matter what happens. This is the way God wants us who belong to Christ Jesus to live.” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 MSG). Or as Dr. Joseph Tkach, President of G.C.I. put it, “Prayer is not a formula; it is the ongoing rhythm of our life.”

As we draw close to you Father in total reliance—please strengthen us.

Study by Cliff Neill


About the Author:
Cliff Neill is an Elder in Grace Communion Church Luton.

Local Congregation:
Grace Communion Church Luton
Farley Hill Methodist Church
North Drift Way
Farley Hill

Meeting Time:
Saturday 10:30am

Local Congregational Contact:
Harry Sullivan
Phone: 01908-582222
Email: harry_sullivan@wcg.org.uk

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