“Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with an attitude of thanksgiving; …“- {Col 4:2}

Thanksgiving is a MEANS to enable you to “devote yourselves to prayer.” “Devote yourselves to prayer KEEPING ALERT through Thanksgiving.” “Devote, continue in prayer…” It does not mean that you are praying twenty four hours a day, but you are in an attitude of prayer and it effects your life. Devoted, the giving of yourself to something, because of some ONE! The pouring out of your heart to Him for the things that Honor, exalt Him. So you THINK, on Him , His Truth and align your thinking, pursuits, priorities towards His End. Prayer is a battle. A Battle against the world system of it’s Independence, a battle against self. Self reliance, self, sufficiency, self- pity, slothfulness, drifting away from spiritual things through the cares of this world of making a living, meeting needs. A battle against an evil one who seeks to tempt us to sin, to doubt about God, His character, love, provision and seek to make us sin conscious and not Christ conscious who has made eternal provision for our sin. It is a battle for our thought life to attack our faith in Him who is faithful! Prayer and His Word are His means to enable us to focus and follow Him,as His Spirit uses them to empower, encourage us in this matter of prayer.


We follow by faith to “pray without ceasing.” {1 Thess 5:18}.  The phrase,”Without ceasing” was used of a “hacking cough.’ Not that it was twenty four seven, but regular interruptions. So praying without ceasing, is to regular  relate to Him things you think, see, it is communicating with Him. Be they beautiful, pleasurable things or painful things, your own or that of others. It is to be God conscious and other conscious in your circumstances. focused on Him, others, for His Kingdom!

Paul says to “DEVOTE,” yourself to prayer.  It is a COMMAND and in the present tense, which means to do this consistently, continually. The word, “devote,” comes from two Greek words, ” prós implies motion, direction = toward, to +karteréo = be strong, steadfast, firm, endure, hold out, bear the burden) It refers to  “be strong, steadfast, firm, endure, hold out, bear the burden) means to be earnest towards, to persevere. It describes a steadfast single-minded fidelity to a certain course of action. It means to persist obstinately in a task, to keep on with devotion, to continue to do something with intense effort, to be steadfastly attentive unto, to give unremitting care to a thing, to continue all the time in a place, to persevere and not to faint, to be constantly diligent, to attend assiduously all the exercises, to adhere closely to, to attend continually or wait on continually, to tarry or remain somewhere.” -{Preceptaustin commentaries}.

Daniel was a man “highly esteemed” by God, and when under great pressure, the threat upon his life, he reverted to the habit of his life, which was we see  he was “devoted to prayer,“even under the threat to his own life for doing so, he chose to pray…

“when Daniel knew that the document (prohibiting prayer to God) was signed, he entered his house (now in his roof chamber he had windows open toward Jerusalem); and he continued kneeling on his knees three times a day, praying and giving thanks before his God, as he had been doing previously.” {Daniel 6:9-10}.


God commands us to continually pray to HIM! It is His revealed will for us. It keeps us in communion with Him, helps us become God conscious, not in feelings but in relationship. Turning your thoughts of others towards prayers for them to Him. Paul did it while in prison, shut in but not shut out from access to Him. You can pray anywhere at anytime, because He has gifted you access through the blood of the LORD Jesus. Prayer is a privilege. prayer is costly, it cost Jesus Christ His Life. Prayer is to be pursued. Praying is an act of Love! Jesus said, “He who has My commandments and obeys them He it is who loves Me.” Would you like to express love to Him, not as a source of merit but from gratitude? Then see prayer as such an expression. Thank Him for the privilege, cost, access you have because of His gift to you!  Prayer is a privilege an expression of His love to you and your gratitude to Him in expressing love to Him as you choose to obey His command! What privilege you have, access to Him continually!



It’s easy to be in a prayer meeting or by your bed, and the work of the day, or the heat, may make you drowsy and you drift off to sleep, slobbering or snoring before you know it! At times tired, emotionally, physically, spiritually, and is there away to boost your prayer life, to become more eternal conscious throughout your day and night? Continually giving yourself in this great eternal pursuit. But how, can we cultivate such a life ? One way we can is to “stay awake,” be alert spiritually, to what is happening, and be God conscious, Kingdom conscious, others conscious as you give yourselves continually, earnestly, persistently to prayer. How do you do this? He tells us. Through thanksgiving!

The word,”alert, awake” is the same meaning as was used of Jesus at Gethsemane when He asked the disciples who fell asleep, could you not have stayed “awake.” And He came and found them sleeping, and said to Peter, “Simon, are you asleep? Could you not keep watch for one hour?”- {Mark 14:37.}  We stay alert to spiritual realities of eternal issues, an eternal God, Heaven, Hell, the souls of people who are heading to one or the other. The opportunities for the Gospel, spiritual well-being of people, His church, the lost and we stay alert through the aid of “THANKSGIVING!” Thanksgiving has an effect on our spiritual development{ Col 1:13-14} and also our Spiritual usefulness in prayer!



…praying at the same time for us as well, that God will open up to us a door for the word, so that we may speak forth the mystery of Christ, for which I have also been imprisoned;  that I may make it clear in the way I ought to speak.”

Note, Paul specifically asks for HELP from them through their praying. We all have different spiritual gifts but we can all pray! He was not an arrogant man where he believed and trusted in himself, that because he had shared before he was sufficient in himself. He wrote in 2 Cor 3:6, “… not that we are sufficient in ourselves but our sufficiency comes from God!” He was conscious of his own deficiency, but did not end there,” But God…” shows him that He is sufficient. He has all that is needed for Him to do His will.

Paul asks for HELP. Help me, HELP us, “…that God will open up a door for the Word, So that we may speak the mystery of Christ for which I was imprisoned.” Following the LORD does not guarantee you a life free of troubles, indeed Paul ended in prison as a result of following the LORD! But his concern is for OPPORTUNITY. He asks them to Pray and ask God to give them OPPORTUNITY, not for escape but EVANGELISM, for the sharing of the Word, so that they may share Christ. He was Christ conscious. He knew He was the answer to the need.

So pray for us he asks,

Pray specifically for opportunities to share Christ.

Pray also for Clarity to share, “…  that I may make it clear in the way I ought to speak.” – Col 4:3-4.  He realized he was dependent, and not assuming he was so sufficient, that he had it down how to share, but he realized he needed the LORD to help him to share with clarity! He calls upon them to give themselves to prayer, continuously, persistently, gratefully staying alert and specifically praying regarding the spiritual well being of others.

He asked this from prison!

Christ conscious people, are concerned with the message of Christ and been able to avail of His help in their circumstances to help those who are incarcerated spiritually!

Thanksgiving is the oil on the hinge that keeps the door open, to God and Evangelism.

It is what keeps us spiritually alert to eternal realities and the Gospel. Thank God and pray with gratitude, awareness, and specifically for the Gospel to go forth through His people, some who are in difficult circumstances. Paul was “shut in,” incarcerated, but not “shut out” from eternal realities!

Who are you praying for in light of their opportunities, clarity, courage to share the Gospel with?

Do you ask God to continually help your friends to avail of their opportunities in their circumstances to advance the Gospel?

When is the last time you have asked someone for prayer that God would give you opportunities that you might share the Gospel and Christ, and for clarity to share?

Note the cooperation in ministering together for God’s honor and the spiritual well being of others. Paul’s difficulties, he asks for prayers. Others opportunity to co labor with him through their prayers to God to answer by providing and open door to share with clarity the Word of God. How wonderful we can all co labor with Him in one another spurring each other on to love and good deeds

“WHEN and THEN.”

“When God gets me out of here, THEN I will share,” was not Paul’s mindset. We often want our circumstances changed and “THEN”  we will share, so we like to think. But what happens if “WHEN” never changes, and “THEN ” we die! We have missed the opportunities that were before us because we were focused on the difficulties and not the Eternal realities. Ask Him to help you live in the “NOW,” and to develop your thinking and pursuits on eternal realities. Presently you can pray. Presently you can pray for others to Him to open opportunities for Him to give favor, and His Word to be received and produce eternal fruit. In your circumstances there are opportunities both to pray and proclaim…

Time to begin. Thank God, cultivate it, and as you focus on Him and become occupied with Him , His kingdom, watch as HE CHANGES YOUR PRAYING to eternal matters!