“Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving…” (Colossians 4:2)
Brother Christopher from New Skete Monastery comments on the struggle we have with being diligent in continual prayer:
“Part of our difficulty with prayer, the dissatisfaction we feel, is that often we are doing all the talking. We offer God whatever is on our mind—our concerns, anxieties, hopes, dreams. . . and then when we’re done, it’s finished—done. The prayer effectively ends the moment we finish our last word. We move on to everyday life without the vaguest hint that our prayer could extend into the next moment, and the next, as smoothly as life unfolds each day, from one silence to the next. Jesus was not just voicing hyperbole when he told the disciples ‘to pray always and not lose heart’ (Luke 18:1). He wasn’t speaking about always ‘saying’ prayers here –his own life never reflected that; he was speaking about living in a state of perpetual prayerfulness, of steadfast faith, an inner climate whose intention is always oriented to God. This is dwelling in pure faith, without any conditions or strings attached, and it is the surest way to God. If we listen to the tradition, to its challenge of unceasing prayer, and work at it consciously, our prayer will increasingly take on this reality; indeed, it must if we are to experience it as a dynamic relationship through which we come truly alive, alive in the fullest sense of the word.
This is the work of a lifetime. ‘Lord, teach us to pray’.” (FOSSIL OR LEAVEN: THE CHURCH WE HAND DOWN, p 74)