Pray continually

Date: Friday, September 26

Scripture1 Thessalonians 5:12-21

Verse: Rejoice always. Pray continually. Give thanks in every situation because this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18)

400x400In his book The Circle Maker, Mark Batterson tells the story of a man named Frank Laubach who was dissatisfied with his prayer life. He decided to try an experiment to see if it would increase his prayer life. Laubach called it “the game with minutes,” which Batterson quotes Laubach as describing this way:

We try to call Him to mind at least one second of each minute. We do note need to forget other things nor stop our work, but we invite Him to share everything we do or say or think. Hundreds of us have experimented until we have found ways to let Him share every minute of our waking hours. (Batterson 161)

This sounds very much like what Paul was getting at when he asked the people in the church in Thessalonica to “Pray continually.” Often when we read this passage we think it an impossible goal. If we were to close our eyes, fold our hands, and talk to God all the time, we wouldn’t get anything else done. But we could if prayer was less about a formula, and more about a running conversation with God, inviting Him, in Laubach’s word, “to share everything we do or say or think.”

Batterson tells us that one of the things Laubach did when playing “the game with minutes” was “shooting people with prayer.” When someone would walk by — a coworker, friend, or stranger — he would say a short prayer for that person. Often, he reported, it would change his interactions with them, and the way they responded to him. Batterson writes, “A prayer experiment like this can turn a commute or walk or workout or meeting into a meaningful spiritual discipline” (Batterson 162). Like Laubach we need to spend more time living our prayers.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, may we continue our conversation all day. Amen.

Action: Experiment with the game of minutes in the day ahead. Shoot some quick prayers wherever you are.

Respond: What do you think off Laubach’s “game with minutes”?

Join the conversation! Click “Leave a comment” or type in the “Leave a reply” box below. Email subscribers, click the title of the devotion in the email to go to the webpage. Then follow the instructions above.


Batterson, Mark. The Circle Maker: Praying Circles around Your Biggest Dreams and Greatest Fears. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2011. Print.

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About Joe Iovino

Christian, husband & father, Associate Pastor in Monument CO, guitar player, motorcyclist, Mets fan.
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