"Pray without ceasing"

In Paul's first epistle to the Thessalonians we read these words: "Pray without ceasing." Obedience to this command, viewed from a false concept of prayer, would place mankind in an embarrassing position; but like all the commandments coming through the spiritually-minded, it is not an unreasonable demand. Mrs. Eddy makes it very practical and simple when she writes in "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 4): "The habitual struggle to be always good is unceasing prayer. Its motives are made manifest in the blessings they bring,—blessings which, even if not acknowledged in audible words, attest our worthiness to be partakers of Love."

Like all the writings of our Leader this passage, when carefully analyzed, conveys a great spiritual truth, for it plainly tells us that what we are to receive in answer to true prayer is a better understanding of divine Love. Here someone may say, That is just what I desire above all else—to be loved more, to be appreciated more by those with whom I associate. But if this is the only desire, we are praying amiss; for as our Leader very convincingly writes on page 39 of "No and Yes," "True prayer is not asking God for love; it is learning to love, and to include all mankind in one affection. Prayer is the utilization of the love wherewith He loves us." Then we are to begin to-day, not to ask to be loved, but to manifest love; for in so doing we are expressing the nature of God, and thereby attesting our worthiness to partake of divine blessings.

Too long has the world misunderstood the meaning of the word "prayer"; and it is little wonder that faith in its efficacy has been almost lost through a distorted sense of how to apply it to meet the needs of the human race. But now, through the inspired pages of Science and Health and the other writings of our Leader, we may all learn how to pray aright.

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Serving and Safety
May 11, 1929

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