In today’s verse, Paul once again challenges us with his prayer life. As he writes to his disciple Timothy, Paul encourages him with the statement that he is praying for Timothy constantly both night and day.
We can easily imagine what an amazing encouragement this would have been to Timothy…knowing that his mentor is praying continuously for him.
This of course sets a high bar for us as followers of Jesus. How can we even begin to come close to this standard of continual prayer?
Yesterday I mentioned Ken Boa’s suggestion of “flash prayers” throughout the day.
In his book Conformed to His Image, Boa also suggests using the same short prayer throughout the day when you don’t have anything specific to pray for. It should be a short phrase that helps remind you of His continual presence. One suggestion by Boa includes the Jesus prayer (“Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner”).
Personally, I’ve found that phrase to be too long.
Instead, I’ve been developing the habit of simply saying “Yes…Jesus” throughout the day. That two word phrase does a couple of things for me.
First it allows me to agree with the Lord in what He is doing at the moment in my life. It also reminds me that I have placed my whole life into His hands and that my goal in that moment is to be obedient to Him.
Repeating that phrase at intervals during the day helps to bring me back to an awareness of His presence.
You may come up with a different phrase.
The important thing is to use a phrase or short prayer that reminds you of the ongoing presence of God and your relationship with Him.
The foundation of continual prayer is starting the day reading the Scripture and praying for the day.
It doesn’t have to be long…but it should be unrushed.
Starting the day with adequate time for devotions allows you to establish the mindset that your life belongs to God and that your goal today is to serve Him.
Prayer: Lord, show me the phrase You want me to use to bring me back into awareness of Your presence.