||Chosen no: R-4883 b, from: 1911 Year.
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"Pray without ceasing."--1 Thess. 5:17.
A LITTLE QUOTATION from somebody's brain seems
wonderfully fitting in the consideration of our text--"Prayer is the
soul's sincere desire, uttered or unexpressed." It is a complete
definition, for sometimes we pray with groanings that cannot be uttered.
There is one form of prayer, one feature of
prayer, which is very appropriate to us, namely, thanksgiving. Yet the
Scriptures discriminate between prayer, praise and thanksgiving, and use these
words in the same connection, as representing various features of worship,
communion with God. In the sense of petition our definition also applies when
we include thanksgiving in our prayers. Expressed or unexpressed, prayer is the
soul's sincere desire. Prayer that would not be the soul's sincere desire would
not be acceptable. We may not always know how to render our thanks to God, but
it is comforting to remember that the Lord knows our thoughts and is willing to
accept our feeble expressions.
All those who have come to the Lord must first
have recognized their need of coming and His readiness, willingness and ability
to supply all necessary things. We need rest and peace and life everlasting.
These we do not find in the world around us. There is no real peace outside of
the Lord's provision: "My peace I give unto you; not as the world giveth
give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be
afraid." (John 14:27.) The things which
the Lord has promised to His people are things which eye hath not seen nor ear
heard, neither have entered into the heart of man.
Whoever, therefore, has received the earnest of
the Spirit has something to desire, something to look forward to, something to
pray for. Therefore we pray, Thy Kingdom come, that the blessings which the
Lord has promised shall be fulfilled, not only those for the world, but also
those for the Church.
SHOULD PRAY FOR FORGIVENESS EVEN AS
As the Christian goes through the world he finds
various things to distract his heart. But since he finds that the Lord has promised that peace he should look for that peace, should expect it. We should
pray to God for the things that we think we ought to have. But we are to take
His superior wisdom as expressed in His Word as our guide; and we are to ask
according to His Word. If we have a measure of peace and of blessing, we should
pray all the more for the fulness of joy. While we have been cleansed
from original sin by the precious blood of Christ, we must remember that we
have daily trespasses; and we should pray daily, "Forgive us our
trespasses." This request the Lord answers on condition that we ask for
forgiveness of our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against
us. So the Christian will find a great deal to pray for in all of life's
The Christian, however, should not be so
absorbed in meditation that he cannot do his work. But the spirit of prayer
should be with him, so that in every affair of life, in every perplexity, he
would be ever ready to turn his mind toward the Lord for His blessings and to
look to the Lord regarding all daily interests; for we are the Lord's. This
course would be a life of prayer without ceasing. We do not cease to ask for
the coming of the [R4883 : page 365] Kingdom
simply because we have asked for it once. We do not cease to pray for our daily
food. We acknowledge that all good things come from Him. We recognize that
"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above and cometh down from
the Father of Lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of
turning" (James 1:17); and that He who
gave His Son for us is ever ready to give to those who seek to serve Him.
This attitude of heart is praying without
ceasing. Sometimes the thought may only flash through the mind, but,
nevertheless, it brings a blessing to us. All of God's dealings with the Elect
class are for their development; and one feature of this development is to learn
to know whence our blessings come and to appreciate the fact that God is the
Giver, and that "no good thing will He withhold from those who walk
W.T. R-4883b : page 364