Praying Continually: 2 Timothy 1:3-4
“3) I thank God, whom I serve with a clear conscience the way my forefathers did, as I constantly remember you in my prayers night and day, 4) longing to see you, even as I recall your tears, so that I may be filled with joy.” 2 Timothy‬ ‭1:3-4‬
Two words surface over and over again in Pauls writings. They are “the gospel” and “prayer.” Both were priorities for him.
The calling of preaching and praying go hand in hand. Acts 6:4 stresses that the apostles learned this very early. They built a team to handle the other demands of ministry, but they devoted themselves to prayer and the ministry of the word.
Of the two, prayer is often the most neglected. I talked to an aging pastor recently who has become a devoted prayer warrior. He said, “If I could go back and do my whole ministry again, I would preach less and pray more.” His concession resonated with me. I fully concur.
Paul had a clear conscience not only because of his good character and conduct, but also because of his diligent ethic in the matter of both preaching and praying. As his writings show, he was courageous in the way he handled the Word because he was continually entering Gods presence in prayer both night and day.
Verse four highlights to bond between Paul and Timothy. As Paul’s farewell at Ephesus shows, he was aware of the terrible afflictions that awaited him. (Read Acts 20:17-38) He knew that they would see his face no more. The last three verses in the context describes their emotions. There was much crying and weeping.
I suspect at some point that Paul and Timothy had a similar parting. He longed to once more see his young disciples face, but there were no guarantees. Because of physical absence, Paul wrote the letters of 1 & 2 Timothy. His young disciple brought him much joy!
But Paul assured Timothy of his prayers. Though they were absent in body, they were connected with one another in spirit through prayer.
Please understand this point, prayer has no boundaries. It can pass through prison walls, transcend mountains and oceans, ignore political restraints and easily navigate time and special barriers. Because prayer is transmitted in the spiritual realm it is not constrained by the laws of physics. Prayer goes directly into the throne room of God who is sovereign over the universe.
This realization becomes the fuel and energy within every prayer warrior. James closed his small book with the same emphasis on prayer. He understood that the effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much. (See James 5:12-18)
Prayer is always in season. Paul prayed both night and day. It is good to block off a time and designate a place for prayer, but Paul learned to praying continually. He learned the secret of living in God’s presence.
Daily Bible Commentary By Terry Baxter: Cofounder of GoServ Global