“…continuing steadfastly in prayer…” – Romans 12:12
The missing jewel in the crown of the church is prayer. She is powerless and passionless when her members are prayerless.
Paul was passionate for the Roman Christians. He longed for them to know and do the will of God. He wrote of continuing and steadfast prayer as an absolute necessity in doing God’s will.
The Greek phrase, “continuing steadfastly” has five uses in the Bible. These five uses pull back the curtain and allow us to understand, in a practical way, the kind of praying that pleases God and brings His will into clear view.
First of all, this kind of praying is faithful. The Greek word Proskartereo means, “to adhere to one, to be devoted or constant to one.” This is not an exercise…it’s a relationship of love with the Living God!
More than that, this kind of praying is focused. The phrase means: “to be steadfastly attentive to; to give unremitting care to a thing.” The truest gauge of our consuming passion for Christ is found in prayer. Are we fickle, false, frail or focused? When the prayer goes up, the passion shows up…in focus!
A third use of this phrase in the Bible shows that this kind of prayer is fixed. It means: “to continue all the time in a place.” Stability in prayer is so important. When the battle heats up, some Christians are hard to find. Retreating Christians cannot know or do the will of God.
Looking further into this phrase, a fourth use shows this kind of prayer is fearless. This fourth usage defines “continuing steadfastly” as: “to show one’s self courageous for.” This is a call for men and women of faith; a call for risk-takers; a call for adventurous warriors. Fearless prayer is fruitful prayer.
A final use of the phrase “continuing steadfastly,” shows that this kind of prayer is fully aware. It is defined as: “being in constant readiness for one, to wait on constantly.” Paul was saying that, “prayer that connects us to the will of God is not naive.” This is not prayer through rose-colored glasses.
One of my heroes of the faith, E. Stanley Jones, said, “Prayer is surrender–surrender to the will of God and cooperation with that will. If I throw out an anchor from the boat and catch hold of the shore and pull, do I pull the shore to me, or do I pull myself to the shore? Prayer is not pulling God to my will, but the aligning of my will to the will of God.”
Choose today to let prayer become the pathway to knowing and doing the will of God.