“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 ESV)
When we encounter obstacles in life, we may hesitate to pray. I remember a time in my life when I was angry at God and frankly did not want to talk to him, although I was willing to listen and read my Bible daily during that dismal period in my life. Do we fail to pray because we believe the help will not come in time? Do we fail to pray because we believe God is not able to help? Do we fail to pray merely because we are so very angry? I encourage you to ask yourself these questions, and to resume praying with increased conviction that God is able to help, and will provide help in time. As a nineteenth century preacher in Indiana observed when President Grant declared a national day of prayer during a cholera epidemic, Christians don’t need a “national day of prayer” to pray; we already pray without ceasing.
O Lord, our God, in the midst of trials it seems difficult to rejoice. Only when we realize that this moment of darkness precedes the dawning of new opportunities and greater challenges do we know that we can pray confidently and anticipate with eager joy what you will reveal to us. Thank you for sustaining us in bleak circumstances. Thank you for equipping us to overcome and to move forward, difficult though that may seem. In Jesus’ name, amen