“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18: NKJV
The kind of prayer I’m talking about; the kind of prayer I think this passage is talking about is substantially different from regular praying, where you ask for things and intercede for others. It’s not an activity where you’re focusing your conscious mind on God, and talking to Him about specific issues, or events, or material things in your life. It’s more like an attitude, an awareness of God’s presence;
it’s a knowing down deep in your heart that God is here inside you, that He’s listening to what’s going on, not just in your public life, but also in your heart. It’s something you can feel. You feel it when you hear a certain song, or read a story, or hear someone speak a truth, and God, who is there in your heart, smiles and says, in that still small voice, “Wow, isn’t that a great line!” Sometimes you feel it when you see a little baby, or a puppy or a kitten, or a bud of a rose that is the first to open. That’s God.
The question then is, “How do you get into this zone?” In my experience it takes some time. It takes “Seeking the Lord where He may be found, calling on Him while He is near.” It takes “Seeking His Face“, and getting to know HIM for Himself, not just what He can do for you. It takes “drawing near to God so He’ll draw near to you.” It takes time, but it’s worth it. You begin to hear yourself saying different things in a different way than before, and you’ll notice that your words are having a different effect. You’ll know that something is definitely going on. That’s God moving in your life. After awhile, you quit asking God for stuff, and you wait on God to show you more of Himself. I think this is what Jesus was talking about in His prayer in John 17: “I pray . . that all of them may be one, . . . May they also be one in us . . . so that they may be brought to complete unity.” I think this “oneness” with God and Jesus and each other, this “complete unity” is what Paul means when he says “pray without ceasing.”