“I have set the LORD continually before me; because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.” Psalm 16:8.

Today your LORD (יהוה) God says:

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give constant thanks, this is My Will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18. This is the only passage in the Bible where I set forth for YOU what is My Will for you who are in Christ Jesus. And each one of these points- rejoicing, praying, and thanking—is so important that each one is numbered as a separate passage of its own. In other passages I tell you that My plans for you are good, that they are delightful, that they are to prosper you and have you walking in perfect health and protection, that they are for your shalom and not evil, to give you a future and a hope. I tell you that My desire for all people is that they be saved and come to know the truth. I tell you to come to Me, to draw close to Me, to walk in the way of My commandments, to abide in Me and let My Word abide in you. I tell you to ask and you will receive. But there is only one passage where I tell you exactly what My Will is for how you are to conduct your daily life. And why is that? Because if you do the three things I command you there, you will have a good life filled with shalom and not evil, you will not sin, you will prosper and be in good health, you will have a future and a hope, and you will follow the path to life and have fullness of joy in My presence and delights at My right hand forever. You will dwell in My house now and forever. And right now, that house you are—and My house is a house of prayer for all people. Partnership.

I teach you how to profit and the way you should go, so what I am telling you to do will cause you to profit and direct you in the way you should go. And it will put you in My rest with Me.

Today we continue our series “It is time for you to enter God’s Rest,” with Life Lesson No. 8: “A Place of Unceasing Prayer.”

You may be thinking how can you pray without ceasing? And the answer is very simple, instead of just talking within yourself to yourself and centering your thoughts on just what is below, you turn that conversation within yourself to a conversation with Me and keep an eye on what is above. Instead of praying to yourself, you pray to Me. Remember when My Son told about the Pharisee and the tax collector that went to pray. He said the Pharisee prayed to himself.

My servant David put the definition of unceasing prayer this way, “I have set the LORD continually before me; because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.” Psalm 16:8. And My servant Paul took his every thought captive into obedience to Christ. He advised you to keep your conversation in Heaven.

Jesus is the perfect example of prayer without ceasing. You may be wondering why He needed to pray, for indeed I often tell you that He withdrew to pray and sometimes would commune with Me all night. You must remember that though He is One God with Me, He humbled Himself to take flesh and emptied Himself of His powers as God to be of human estate, that is, He limited Himself to operate as one of you, though without sin or corruption. And He said He never said anything except what I told Him or did any works except what I showed Him. You see this constant communication at times being revealed to you, such as when He had gone up to Jerusalem just before Passover and a large crowd was with Him, He suddenly spoke out to Me right in the middle of His other conversation, “Now My soul has become troubled; and what shall I say, ‘Father, save Me from this hour’? But for this purpose I came to this hour. Father, glorify Your name.” Then a voice came out of heaven: “I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again.” So the crowd of people who stood by and heard it were saying that it had thundered; others were saying, “An angel has spoken to Him.” Jesus answered and said, “This voice has not come for My sake, but for your sakes.” John 12:27-30.

And when He provided bread for the crowd of over five thousand on the hillside from just two fish and five small loaves, He was praying, “And He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up toward heaven, He blessed the food and broke the loaves and He kept giving them to the disciples to set before them; and He divided up the two fish among them all.” Mark 6:41. Unceasing prayer can be as simple as just giving Me a look and then doing as I show you. I guide you by My eye upon you, but if you don’t look at Me you cannot be guided.

And at the tomb of Lazarus, right in the middle of talking to those present there, He reveals His unceasing prayer with Me, “So Jesus, again being deeply moved within, came to the tomb. Now it was a cave, and a stone was lying against it. Jesus said, “Remove the stone.” Martha, the sister of the deceased, said to Him, “Lord, by this time there will be a stench, for he has been dead four days.” Jesus said to her, “Did I not say to you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?” So they removed the stone. Then Jesus raised His eyes, and said, “Father, I thank You that You have heard Me. I knew that You always hear Me; but because of the people standing around I said it, so that they may believe that You sent Me.” When He had said these things, He cried out with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come forth.” The man who had died came forth, bound hand and foot with wrappings, and his face was wrapped around with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Unbind him, and let him go.” John 11:38-44.

And at the Passover meal the night He was betrayed, Jesus was talking with His disciples and giving them instruction and suddenly it turned into His talking with Me and praying for them as they listened. “Jesus spoke these things; and lifting up His eyes to heaven, He said, “Father, the hour has come; glorify Your Son, that the Son may glorify You, even as You gave Him authority over all flesh, that to all whom You have given Him, He may give eternal life. This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent. I glorified You on the earth, having accomplished the work which You have given Me to do. Now, Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was.” John 17:1-5. And so He continued and prayed for many things for them and for those who would believe in Him by their word.

And there are many other instances where you see Jesus pausing to hear from Me before answering the Pharisees and scribes. He was constantly looking to Me and consulting Me. He also would stop and rejoice in the Holy Spirit and pray to Me. His prayer was so constant and so real that the disciples asked Him to teach them how to pray. And He gave you the pattern for all prayer to be built on, for it was the one He used as well: Fellowship, partnership, and stewardship.

And when you live in unceasing prayer, which means you are alert and aware of Me, I can show you things, warn you of things, remind you of things and keep you on track. And this goes down to the minutest detail to the biggest decisions in your life. Minor to major. Nothing is too small for My attention and nothing is too large for Me to take care of quickly and efficiently. I know all and am everywhere. You are wise to consult Me.

My rest is a place of unceasing prayer. In the tabernacle of old, the Holy of Holies was a place of prayer. You entered in a cloud of incense and offered prayer for the people and the nation. You sprinkled the blood of the lamb and made intercession. And to enter you were in holy garments and washed clean at the laver before entering. And you came in with the blood of the unblemished lamb and sprinkled it seven times.

I want to mention something to you here for your encouragement and edification. Many of you are reluctant to come to Me with confidence in prayer because you regret past sins, or even ones you keep repeating out of weakness, and feel inadequate in that you cannot offer Me a pure life of integrity that is without sin. But you can. I give you Jesus that you might live through Him. 1 John 4:9 (“By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him.”) You have a sinless, pure, perfect life of integrity in which there is no taint of sin to offer Me as your own, it is the life of Jesus. And as He is so are you in this world. 1 John 4:17 (“By this, love is perfected with us, so that we may have confidence in the day of judgment; because as He is, so also are we in this world.”) And My servant Paul understood, “I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.” Galatians 2:20. And he told you that all who are baptized into Christ have clothed themselves in Christ. Galatians 3:27.

I gave the Israelites a foretelling of this so they would understand it when the fulfillment came. In the offerings for sin of the Old Covenant, such as the burnt offering, the one who had sinned would bring an unblemished perfect lamb to the entrance to the courtyard of the Tabernacle and the priest would examine the lamb (not the sinner) to make sure it was without blemish. If so, then the one who had sinned would lay his hand on the head of the spotless lamb and his sin would enter the lamb and the unblemished purity of the lamb would enter the one who had sinned. The sinner would then slaughter the lamb and the priests would prepare it and place it on the bronze altar until nothing was left but ashes. The ashes would then be placed and the east side of the altar and later taken outside the camp. Sins gone and righteousness established for the sinner.

But now you do not have the shadow, you have the substance that cast that shadow down the ages. Jesus. The lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. And His life is now yours. Offer to Me the holy sinless life of beauty and never a hint of sin to Me as your own and come with confidence to My throne of grace to receive mercy and find grace in time of need.

Unceasing prayer is also protection. It is in unceasing prayer you can keep an open line of communication to get advice, warning, direction, correction, healing, guidance, fellowship, partnership and stewardship. I can warn of things and tell you what things you need to keep or to throw out. But above all, prayer will protect you from sin and the wiles of the devil. Unceasing prayer keeps you alert, “And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. With all prayer and petition praying at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints.” Ephesians 6:17-18. Praying at all times in the Spirit. This is a great way to offer unceasing prayer without effort. Prayer in tongues. Just keep it up even under your breath. This will put you in constant touch with Me in the Spirit speaking mysteries, but pray for interpretation and I will reveal to you the mystery. As I did for Daniel when he asked. “Then the mystery was revealed to Daniel in a night vision. Then Daniel blessed the God of heaven.” Daniel 2:17-19. And when he explained the mystery of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream to him, the king said, “Surely your God is a God of gods and a Lord of kings and a revealer of mysteries, since you have been able to reveal this mystery.” Daniel 2:47. Daniel was another one of unceasing prayer. And he kept looking into whatever I showed him until he got the answer he was seeking from Me. And unceasing prayer got Daniel through the lion’s den unscratched and his three Hebrew friends, Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego, through the fiery furnace without even smelling of smoke.

Read the Psalms and you will see David’s unceasing prayer of communication with Me. There was a time though that David stopped that unceasing flow and looked away from Me and he sinned. I forgave him but it cost him dearly. He never got over it. It was before him always and eventually resulted in the rebellion of his son and finally resulted in a divided kingdom. Never turn your gaze off Me, keep alert, keep aware by prayer.

My Word is what prayer is about. Agreeing with My Word keeps you walking together with Me and gives you the ability to hear, for I speak to you and reveal Myself to you in My Word. YOU CANNOT SEPARATE PRAYER FROM MY WORD. Moses gave you the description of unceasing prayer, “Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD is one! You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” Deuteronomy 6:4-9. And that is unceasing prayer. Prayer should always be Word focused for that is who I am and how I communicate with you, by My Word.

And if you love Me and keep My Word, I have made you a promise, “Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our abode with him.” John 14:23. Jesus and I will make our abode with you. And then there is no problem with unceasing prayer—you talk with those who you love who live with you continually.

I love you. It is time to enter My rest and let go of stress. When I tell you to pray without ceasing you know it is for your benefit. There is great reward in keeping the communication line open. You are under an open Heaven for those who believe and are indwelt by My Spirit. You are never without words forming in your mind, direct them all into conversation with Me.