Praying Always 


… praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints…  (Ephesians 6:18) 

St Paul tells us we should be ‘praying always’. Orthodox theologian Olivier Clement offers some thoughts on how to understand praying at all times: 

“Therefore ‘we should pray in the morning so that Christ’s resurrection is celebrated through our morning prayer’ and ‘when the sun sets and the day ends we should again pray. Christ is our true sun and our true light: when the sun goes down and the light of the world fades, we call on Christ’s coming that brings the grace of eternal light’ (St Cyprian of Carthage). The cycle of day and night, henceforth bathed in the light of Christ, who came and who will come again, is therefore for us the symbol of the ‘day without end’ and of the ‘day which has no night.’ And so our daily prayer becomes ‘an imitation of what we one day ought to become.’  


‘If in the Scriptures, Christ is called the true sun and the true light, then as Christians we cannot let a single hour pass without worshipping God in all places and at all times. Because we are in the light of the sun that is Christ, we should keep ourselves in prayer all day long. And when in the natural progression of things night returns, it’s darkness can do no harm to those who pray: they are the sons of light. For them daylight shines even in the darkness. He whose bright sun is named Christ is never deprived of sunshine and clarity’ (St Cyprian of Carthage). (TRANSFIGURING TIME, p 89) 


You who at all times and at every hour, in heaven and on earth, are worshipped and glorified, O Christ God, who are long-suffering, plenteous in mercy, most compassionate, who loves the righteous and has mercy on sinners; Who calls all people to salvation through the promise of good things to come: receive, O Lord, our prayer at this hour and guide our life toward your commandments. Sanctify our souls, make chaste our bodies, correct our thoughts, purify our intentions, and deliver us from every sorrow, evil, and pain. Compass us about with your holy angels, that, guarded and guided by their array, we may attain to the unity of the faith and to the knowledge of your unapproachable glory: for You are blessed unto the ages of ages. Amen. (The Prayer of the Hours)