“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” – 1 Thessalonians 5:16
The above verse gives three things that ought to characterize the life of a Christ follower. First, we should never let the enemy take away joy from our lives, as we rejoice in all circumstances. This is not to deny the realities of life, that, on occasion Christians encounter those devastating situations that seek to deprive of them joy. The children of God are always a target from the “wiles of the devil” who seeks to “kill and destroy” and are not immune to life’s upheavals. But joy is one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit (5:22). Being joyful is one of the greatest deterrent against Satan whose mission is to rob Believers of their joy, which none should allow.
Second, is to pray without ceasing. Of course the life of any Christian will experience those dry patches, some set of difficult circumstances or perhaps distraction, when prayer is not as forthcoming. Do not give up on prayer for it is the gateway to all your desires. By praying without ceasing, it means that at any time of the day or anywhere we should be free to share with the Almighty God our hopes, fears, anxieties, joys and cares. Through Christ Jesus we have that direct access to our Father in heaven who is patiently ready and willing for us to unburden our hearts and longings.
Finally, we should give thanks in all circumstances. One might say, “easier said than done” for indeed there are those situations that may face any of us, of which it is difficult to give thanks. There are deaths in families and one can be done poorly by those they once trusted, an experience we know Joseph faced with the betrayal of his brothers. The Christian rejoices in all circumstances because of the faith in Romans 8:28, “And we know that for all those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called to His purpose.” While in the immediate short run, it may be humanly difficult to appreciate a negative event, we thank because we know our God never fails.
So, for today, in our lives, let us decide to be joyful, be thankful and pray without ceasing.
Prayer for today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, today I decide to be joyful, thankful and pray without ceasing, to grow in the knowledge of you, this I pray in Christ Jesus!