Have you ever attempted to do something without the instructions?

Sometimes I have success but other times I fumble and get frustrated until I read and reread the instructions.

The other day I decided to bake a favorite recipe for baked oatmeal, one that I’ve created many times. I glanced at the directions to make sure I had all the ingredients and reviewed the baking procedure. The oven temperature was set, the ingredients mixed and poured into the baking dish. Simple enough.

With one final glance at the recipe, I realized I skipped an important instruction. I neglected to grease the dish. The breakfast bars wouldn’t be ruined, but it would be hard to dig out of the dish.

Instead of putting it in the oven, my next steps were scooping the batter back in the mixing bowl, greasing the dish, and once again pouring it back in the now greased baking dish.

Neglecting the simple instruction caused extra steps for me.

In the busyness of our lives, we can overlook basic prayer instructions.

Neglecting the instructions can create extra steps or frustration in our lives.

Colossians 4:2 offers simple prayer guidance.

Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.

These three simple prayer instructions can guide us.

  • Be devoted to prayer. The word devoted means “to persist at” or “to remain with.” Prayer continually with persistence. When we don’t see the answers we wanted, we get discouraged. We are instructed to keep praying.
  • Be watchful, with an awareness of what is happening around us. This could be shown by praying for emergency vehicles we see as the sirens blare or praying for someone in distress we pass on the street. We remember to pray for our cities and country. Watchful prayer can happen anywhere.
  • Be thankful. A thankful spirit reminds us of the blessings in our lives. Pause to remember all that God has done for us.

The prayer instructions are straightforward. The peace the God is forfeited if they are neglected.

Be devoted to prayer, being watchful and thankful. Keep your eyes on the Lord while observing life.

Follow the prayer instructions!


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