Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.
The monastic life would appeal to me in a married order of course, in that there is a set discipline and rhythm. It is not like we have to find a monastery to do this or even help us do this, though actually one might learn quite a lot through them. We are called to this in the busyness of our everyday lives, even in the midst of them.
I like prayer books, especially the Book of Common Prayer, but to this day I’m not accustomed to using one on any regular basis. I am waiting for the release of a new Book of Common Prayer from the Anglican Church in North America, the denomination of the church plant we are a part of. One can get something of that online daily.
Wherever I am I have a mug of coffee and a little NIV New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs with me. And I read in the Old Testament and New Testament daily (now as a rule, two chapters in each) and five chapters from the Psalms to get through them every month. I have always been a Bible reading or even more in the past, a Bible listening person. But I wouldn’t say I have been a very good person of prayer. Nor have I taken as seriously from scripture all I’ve read so as to overcome propensiites in me which were not helpful, such as the failure to trust God to provide.
What I think I do understand well enough is to have a vital, growing, ongoing prayer life requires being in the word and seeking to live it out, and hear what God is saying to us in it. We see in the ministry of the apostles in Acts that the word of God and prayer went together.
Prayer is something we do by faith. It doesn’t matter whether or not we feel like praying, though if I seem to have a spirit of prayer, I like to pick up on that and keep praying. I think more helpful is to realize it’s going to be an uphill battle, including some serious spritual warfare along the way, and simply do it as best one can. And to take every opportunity to pray with others.
Perhaps for one reason or another, we are limited in what we can do. Especially when we think of how we can help others spiritually who may not want such help. We can pray. And as the letter tells us, we need to devote ourselves to prayer. That prayer might become as natural to us as breathing, as talking to a friend or coworker.
An important part of the life we’re called to in and through Jesus.