And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints (Ephesians 6:17-18 KJV)
Prayer isn’t a routine limited to a time or place, but a way of life. When you pray, you are being mindful of the things of God. Not only do you acknowledge His presence, you show that you have no desire to escape His will. Thus, your fellowship with God is evidenced in your works. In other words, when you do what God asks of you, you prove your love for Him. Therefore, “always praying” doesn’t always mean you have to be on your knees with folded hands. A life that is in agreement with God’s will is a continual prayer. What does your life say about your relationship with Jesus?
In the Spirit
By praying in the Spirit, you essentially choose to follow the path of God’s design. People have a greater tendency to subject themselves to temptation than they have a desire to seek God. They lack discernment because they refuse to walk with in the Spirit. Praying in the Spirit means we will receive guidance on how to walk with God, strength to resist evil, and power to change our lives for the better, so that we me be fully conformed to the image of God. Thus, it’s a choice to allow God to enlighten our thoughts, illuminate our lives, and transform our hearts. What evidence do you see in yourself that indicates you are praying in the Spirit?
Knowing which end to look for and how to move toward it is vital to maintaining a harmonious relationship with Christ. Not all paths lead to God. Therefore, it’s important to know that we’re on the right path. Knowing Jesus means you’re where you ought to be.
The Bible is our instruction manual for life; it tells us how to live and love. Moreover, it delineates God’s will, and reveals His character to us. No doubt, there’s a growing lack of interest among people who profess to know Jesus to study the Bible. Many will pick it up from time to time to read it casually, but they merely swim in shallow water; they don’t want to go deep.
People wonder why they have trouble discerning the voice of God. It’s because they don’t want to take time to get to know Him; they would rather spend hours watching TV or playing video games, wasting precious time away on worldly pursuits. That time would be better spent reading the Bible, and learning how to exercise faith in God. Are you using your time wisely?
The prefix, “per,” denotes the idea of being in the midst of something. Couple it with, “severe,” and we arrive at the conclusion that to “persevere” indicates that one is in the midst of a severe situation. Thus, perseverance essentially has to do with weathering a storm, or to put it another way, it’s what happens when you go through a storm with the understanding that storms don’t last forever. In other words, you won’t give up or compromise your faith in any way; instead, you will endure to the end.
It’s important to note that adversity isn’t necessarily evidence of God’s absence, or a sign that He doesn’t care about what’s happening in your life. For those who are walking with God, it’s proof that He knows the end from the beginning. After all, Jesus said we would suffer persecution as a result of following Him (see John 16:33).
Nothing takes God by surprise. And we shouldn’t be surprised by opposition. Those who believe in God should expect things to heat up at times; for all who seek to live a godly life will suffer persecution (see 2 Timothy 3:12). Incidentally, persecution can be manifested in various forms. It doesn’t always have to be extreme, but could be something as simple as an insult.
No matter what happens in your life, remember, God will always prevail. He holds the future in His hands (see Isaiah 46:9–10; 55:9–13). If you’re going through hardship, don’t give up. Remain faithful to God at all times, praying with all perseverance, and times of refreshing will come.
Supplication for All the Saints
Not only should we pray for others, if possible, we should become an answer to prayer. In other words, we need to put our words into practice. It’s good to intercede for others, but God already knows what we need before we ask. Therefore, praying for others is more than just speaking words to God; it’s about making connections with those for whom we are praying, to encourage and edify them in Christ. It’s about walking with them, not away from them, about letting them know they’re loved, and showing them they’re not alone in their struggles.
Incidentally, the word, “all,” tells us that we shouldn’t show partiality when it comes to opening our arms to those who have opened their hearts to Jesus. It’s tragic when people allow personal biases to get in the way of seeing people as Jesus does. When people need a holy embrace, they’re often given a thrust of indifference. This must stop!
Satan attempts to counterfeit everything that’s good; and his counterfeit for intercessory prayer is criticism (the destructive kind). Instead of complaining and gossiping about the shortcomings others, we should lift these people up in prayer. Of course, there will be things about people we won’t like or agree with. However, these differences shouldn’t keep us from exemplifying Jesus’ love in our interactions with them. Jesus died for sinners, not saints. It would do us well to remind ourselves of this daily.
Every aspect of prayer as noted in this article should be applied to our lives. Like pieces to a puzzle, we must put all of these things in their proper place, if we want to see what God wants to show us. Let’s be diligent to ask God to help us put the pieces together, so that we may see what He wants us to see and show the world what it means to walk with Jesus—always praying in all ways.