Pray without Ceasing

Photo by Jakob Owens

Tapping into the Spiritual Resources of the Universe

My favorite quotation about prayer is from Meister Eckhart. He says: “If a man had no more to do with God than to be thankful, that would suffice.” 

So what is prayer? For me, prayer is a spiritual experience whereby we tap into the spiritual resources of the universe. Praying is a lifestyle choice. It is the way we live our lives, the way we work with others, and the way we think of others. In other words, it is the way we live. This is how I interpret the Scripture that says “pray without ceasing” (1 Thess. 5:17). I used to ask myself, How can you do that? But when you live a prayerful life, that is how it is accomplished.

When the thought of someone comes in my mind, while I am working or even washing dishes, that focus of energy on that particular person is my prayer. It could be a friend, a relative, or an acquaintance. At that point, I am focusing on raising my energy level to send positive and uplifting thoughts to and for that person.

I want to take you back to my childhood. I grew up in North Carolina in a small coastal town. My family was instrumental in the founding of one of the first Black churches, so I was literally brought up in the church. From the earliest time I can remember, each Wednesday night at 7 p.m., you would find my family in church for “prayer meeting.” That tradition continues today.

The meeting began with everyone singing a hymn, spiritual, or gospel song; and then sharing some experience; and ending with a prayer. Some people would sing a song that would reflect their prayer, like “This Little Light of Mine,” “We’ve Come This Far By Faith,” or “I Couldn’t Hear Nobody Pray.” My mother was the church pianist, and as soon as a person would begin the first note, she would accompany the song in the key the person was singing in. From the age of six, I can remember songs like “Amazing Grace” and “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot” being sung so often that they became a part of my life. Each person in the congregation would lead with a song, and finally the service would end with a prayer for all of the concerns. In some ways, you could consider this the sharing of joys, sorrows, and concerns in the Black church tradition.

Being brought up in this kind of environment, I took the Bible literally and believed every Bible story I was taught in Sunday school. At the age of ten, I had my first spiritual experience, which I now consider a miracle. I was playing in the house with a cousin, and we were running around in different rooms. Suddenly, I tripped on the carpet and fell on the floor, where I knocked out my front tooth. My mouth was filled with blood, and my mother rushed me to the dentist. He examined me and put something in my mouth to stop the bleeding. He told my mother that the tooth could not be saved, and we would have to replace it with an implant. I cried and told my mother I did not want a new tooth. I remember very clearly my mother taking me home and calming me down. I climbed up on my bed, and she stopped me from crying.  Once the bleeding had stopped, she noticed that I was calmer. She got down on her knees by my bedside. She asked me if I believed God could heal my tooth. I said yes. She suggested that both of us pray for a healing. She took the tooth that I knocked out of my mouth, washed it, and placed it back inside my mouth and held it in position throughout the time that we prayed together. After we finished our prayer, I fell asleep, and my mother went back to work in the kitchen.

In an hour or so, I woke up, I asked mom if I could have something to eat. She asked what I wanted, and I said some toast with jelly. She asked if I felt I could eat it without pain, and I said yes. When she brought the jelly sandwich to me, I bit into it without any pain, and the tooth did not fall out.  It was firmly rooted in my mouth. We both jumped up for joy when I told her. Together we said a prayer of thanksgiving for the restoration of my tooth. When we told the dentist, he was amazed. Today that tooth is still there. As a child this was an incredible experience for me. Can you imagine how this would change the life of a ten-year-old child who was struggling with his own spirituality?  

Today therapists and medical doctors realize that there is a healing factor to prayer. Much of this is due to the work of Deepak Chopra, who lectured on a holistic approach to medicine before it was accepted by the general population. However, even as early as 1902, William James in his publication of The Varieties of Religious Experience stated that “prayers for the sick, if any medical fact can be considered to stand firm, it is that in certain environments, prayer may contribute to recovery and should be encouraged as a therapeutic measure.”

What we think and how we feel can actually change the biochemistry of our bodies. When we learn to go beyond our limitations and seek a place of oneness with the universe, things can change. Chopra tells us that the biochemistry in the body is a product of awareness. He feels that beliefs, thoughts, and emotions create chemical reactions that exhibit themselves in every cell. Chopra says the key moment in getting well is when loss of fear causes a shift in the quantum fluctuations, which results in the physical expression of health. As a consequence of this research, medical students are now learning about the spiritual practices of their patients. As a former hospital chaplain, I found praying with patients and their families was a very healing experience for everyone involved. It seemed to me that the collective focus of energy of several people on one individual helped that person begin a healing process from within. Prayer seemed to bring about a change within everyone present on a molecular level. 

I believe in the power of prayer. Not just because of my childhood experience but from my adult experiences in life. Sitting in silence with someone, holding their hand, or laying hands on them are special ways of praying that enhance our spiritual lives. Gratitude is an important aspect of prayer, and I certainly feel a sense of it each time I pray.

In our Quaker tradition, we have an expression of “holding someone in the Light.” I think it means different things to different people. For me, the expression has two dimensions. The first is a mystical quality of seeing the person or situation in my mind’s eye surrounded by Divine Light. I often think of God as the Light (John 1:9). That Light is filled with grace and love. It also has a healing quality about it. It is that healing quality that changes the biochemistry in our bodies and allows our Light to shine from within. As George Fox says, “The first step of peace is to stand still in the Light.” By standing in the Light, we are able to let that of God within us shine outward to touch another person. I like to envision the Divine Spirit illuminating a person or situation. This is not a result of our supplicating prayers, which for me, is part of this process, but rather a result of divine grace, which is freely given.

When I hold someone in the Light, I feel a spiritual bond or special connection with the person or situation. I am reminded of the Scripture in Galatians 6:2 of bearing one another’s burdens. This is what I feel, as if I am bearing that burden with someone. Take for instance, when one of my friends told me of the death of her daughter, I felt her pain and grieved with her. I tried to hold her in the Light for strength and courage to get through the difficult days ahead. Although I was not able to visit her, I still felt my spiritual bond was keeping us close.

The second dimension of “holding someone in the Light” is the practical aspect of not only thinking of the person or situation but opening oneself up to the possibility of helping in some way. That help can be manifested by just listening on the phone or in person, holding a hand, sitting in silence, or encouraging someone to express their feelings by crying on my shoulder or my extending a hug. The help can also be more in-depth by using whatever skills or abilities I have to make a difference in someone’s life. Maybe it is giving a friend who is taking care of a parent a rest break or going shopping for them. Maybe it is taking someone to a doctor’s appointment to help a caregiver, or sitting with someone while a surgery is taking place in a hospital. Sometimes I might be literally holding a person as they might be falling apart emotionally. These are just a few examples of what I might do. In each case, I feel as if I am holding the person in the Light.

In my view, prayer is a part of the process of holding someone in the Light. To hold someone in the Light is a spiritual practice, just like fasting or meditation. They all complement one another and help us on our spiritual journey.

Chester Freeman

Chester Freeman is a retired college and hospital chaplain. He is the author of a children’s book, Runaway Bear, and has served as a foreign correspondent for the Australian magazine Textile Fibre Forum. Currently Freeman is a freelance writer for CURE: Cancer Updates, Research and Education, a quarterly cancer education and support magazine.

78 thoughts on “Pray without Ceasing

  1. Thank you Chester for both taking us back to the bedrock of prayer and at the same time opening us out to a broader scale of words and actions about how we can share our spirituality.

  2. I can relate to this article in so many ways. Holding people in the light, being there for someone else, and tapping into the spiritual sources of the universe are ways I pray, too. I loved the description of the prayer meeting. I would like to attend one some day. Thanks for the wonderful article.

  3. I love reading Chester Freeman’s stories. Written from the heart, and accessible to Friends. His description of the 10 year old boy and his mother praying that the tooth will be restored is touching.

  4. Chester explores aspects of prayerfulness, the meaning of holding one another in the Light, and the effect of spiritual energy in healing, both as abstract concepts and as revelatory real-life moments. His reflections find echoes in my experience and musings, giving his essay the feel of a call-and-response gospel song. The gifts he describes, when we access them, weave together to strengthen, deepen and enrich us.

  5. Albretha
    Chester I really appreciate your article on prayer for it was very uplifting and well receive.
    You did such a great explanation on how we all have different ways of praying.
    I love when you at a pray meeting and someone may sing instead of praying and the next individual may pray.
    I now pray and talk to God somethings all day for whatever situation I maybe facing good or bad to get me
    through. Prayer is powerful.
    Again, thank you for a wonderful article and continue to write more.

  6. This article is a blessing to me and has arrived in perfect time. Presently, I am writing a message regarding my spiritual thoughts to our grandchildren, as an assignment for a company called Storyworth, I believe that one can evolve spiritually on Earth as it is in Heaven. I Believe that we really put our trust into the Holy Spirit and allow ourselves not to worry, we will find many blessings. Thus putting our lives in God’s Hands and allow His Will and not our will be done. After this leap into Faith we will find that our fruits and the gifts of the spirit will mature and develop even more.Victor, We then will transform from being Christians into being disciples.

  7. Chester’s Quaker’s Light is an interesting concept. It’s certainly a powerful means of connecting with the afflicted. And they are all around us. Too few take the time to show interest. We are too caught up in our own everyday activities. Chester shows us how to change that. The light that God gives us is for others to see. The transformation taking place in our lives will attract others. (Isa 49:6.) Paul tells us we do not always know how to pray. (Rom 8:26-27.) I find it useful to just get on my knees and let my mind come to complete quietness letting God’s Spirit search me and carry what “He” sees as important to the Throne of Grace on my behalf. But that’s me. God knows what is on my heart. However, I do not always remember to pray for those I promised, or requests received daylily. I let God’s Spirit sort it all out. In case anyone doubts Chester’s answered prayer testimony, I too have mine. Prayer does work.

  8. When Chester writes about prayer and caring for people, we should listen! The man knows what he’s talking about. How many thousands of hands has he held when people needed him? How many thousands of prayers has he sent out? He didn’t become a chaplain by accident. I think he was born caring about people. But his many life experiences–his childhood in the Black church, studying Zazen in Japan, his singing, his medical education, the hundreds of teddy bears he created–all of these things and so much more have fed into strengthening and training his caring soul. He is truly walking the walk. Truly a wise soul. To be listened to!

  9. Wonderful portrait of “life on two levels,” Chester! You start off strong with this early sentence: “Praying is a lifestyle choice. It is the way we live our lives, the way we work with others, and the way we think of others . . . ” Then a lovely extended revelation of the ties that bind our molecules and consciousness with Grace and Light. Thank you for this article!

  10. Chester Freeman’s wonderful article provides a blueprint for leading a prayerful life. Rather than occasionally praying, building daily routines around it leads to healthy benefits, even healing and miracles. He cites Deepak Chopra’s findings that prayer actually changes the body’s biochemistry for the better on molecular levels. It doesn’t have to be the traditional petition asking for specific results. It can also be simply sending/thinking positive uplifting thoughts about someone/something…..sending the Light of Love out into the world. The title of the article is an apt one. Chester Freeman doesn’t just occasionally “tap” into “Spiritual Resources”, he’s always “plugged into” a life of ceaseless prayer.

  11. Once again, Chester Freeman draws us into the subject of his writing, for me, literally, this time, into the Light. I loved thinking
    more about the immediacy of praying, as in washing dishes! Even earthy tasks can bring us/keep us in the Light! Now, I am
    going to do my exercise walk, and, while I often pray at the same time, I will be more inspired, hopefully. “In-spire-d” it is!

  12. If prayer is the gift that keeps on giving, Mr. Freeman’s contributions to his readers are legion. Thank you Chester for another uplifting essay. We should all join you in reaching out and spreading the light on one another. As he says, it’s a lifestyle choice….. and what a good one it is!

  13. Thank you for these encouraging words, Chester, and for holding us in the light as you write. I had not heard the story of your youth which was both amazing and inspiring. Your writing is so encouraging and lifts us all out of our everyday challenges and guides us toward deeper experiences and meaning through thoughtful prayer and care for others. Thank you.

  14. I answer the phone at a local hospital. Was having a terrible day and out of the blue 3 different people asked if they could pray for me. I was overwhelmed and in tears but a sense of peace came over me. Chester has a way of touching me that is hard to explain but his homemade cookies and cakes are just like having a prayer said for all that are working that day. I was told that that it doesn’t matter how tired you are at night a one word prayer ” thank-you ” will work. One other thing I have learned is to smile is almost as powerful as a prayer .

  15. Thanks Chester for your insights on prayer and how connecting with others can add to or provide, at different times, strength and meaning and healing for those who pray and those who we pray for.

  16. Thanks Chester. You are truly a gifted writer. I knew a lot of this. I do need to be reminded. God as we see Him is the Healer and what I or we as humans can help. I will reread this many times. The Church I went to as a child did not have some of the beautiful songs you mentioned. I went with my parents and was respectful to all the Teachers. Thank you again.

  17. Thanks for this warm, sensitive essay, Chester. I appreciate the way you integrate music into your prayer life. I think music animates the spirit and makes us receptive to grace. For me, music is the sound of light.
    Keep me in your prayers please!

  18. Chester’s “Pray Without Ceasing” rings so true for me. My husband of 41 years was encouraged to undergo a robotic surgical procedure for a mysterious growth on a lung lobe. We met with the surgeon in December, 2023 and my hourly conversations/prayers with our Heavenly Father began. The mysterious growth was cancer and a lobectomy of the lobe was done in January, 2024. More prayers were lifted while lymph nodes from his lungs were analyzed. Our prayers were answered after 72 hours when we learned that the cancer had not spread and had been caught at stage 1. God is good and listens to our prayers. Thank you God for Chester Freeman who reminds us through his writing how wonderful you are.

  19. Thank you, Chester. You are truly a gifted writer. As I read your words, I feel you bringing me into a spiritual bond with you. And I feel “held in the Light” with you. I don’t know how you did that, but you did! Thank you for your thoughts, your prayers and your support.

  20. ‘Holding someone in the light’ is both a beautiful expression and concept. I was glad to be reminded of it and the notion is well integrated in this inspirational article.

  21. Chester,
    You always give me so much to think about and contemplate. I believe that prayer has an effect on every part of our life, be it spiritual or physical or both. Thank you for leading me and reminding me how important a praying life is to not only the one being prayed for but for the one doing the praying.

  22. Thank you Chester! This article resonates with me on so many levels. How timely is this publication! This week our family, friends and congregation have been “praying without ceasing” for a dear friend of ours and the medical staff caring for him. When we first received the news of the severity of his heart attack, I had no words, no cohesive thoughts. The only thing I could do was sing the hymns of my childhood that have carried me through the most challenging times, knowing God knew what was in my heart. Your description of the two dimensions of holding someone in the Light is so well expressed. Prayers of thanksgiving are also vital. We need to celebrate answered prayers and the goodness in our lives. His wife said that they have felt the communal prayer supporting all of them and that his healing is nothing short of miraculous.

  23. Chester, thanks so much for sharing yourself, as you have done so many times before. Prayer is so much more than asking for our needs to be fulfilled. Every thought, word and action is a potential prayer. As you experienced, healing occurs so often when we put our trust in God’s spirit inside of us. Your insights are very inspiring for all of us.Victor, NY

  24. Wow! Another beautiful article from Chester.
    Chester is a true mystic in the way that he can go so deeply into spiritual practices of prayer, miracles, and holding people in the Light. He weaves in so eloquently both information from spiritual teachers and his own experience. I loved this article!

  25. Mr. Freeman’s thoughts about prayer and its effects on someone, even physically, plus his insights concerning “holding someone in the light” are so valuable and expressed so well. His life experience from a young age, and continuing through his career and to the present, are replete with examples of how a thoughtful and caring person uses the power of prayer and helps to shine Light where it is needed and can do good. His examples that we all can follow are so valuable! What a wonderful article this is!

  26. I found this article very helpful. I didn’t grow up with much religion in my life. The only thing I knew about prayer was a brief prayer at supper time and the Lords Prayer before bed. I didn’t know anything about really communicating with my Higher Power, but I’ve been exploring this.

  27. I really enjoyed reading this article and appreciate, so much, Chester’s guidance in prayer and helping others. His writing is always inspirational and provides a great “light” for the readers to follow. Thank you, so much, Chester, for your guidance and inspiration!

  28. Chester, I don’t just agree with you, I KNOW about the light of which you speak. Prayer is a two-way language of its own that can only be experienced and held from deep within — which is also at the same time, mysteriously time expansive. I too have been held in the light, and having my biochemistry forever changed with a simple bowl of ice cream that was shared, wordlessly, as a friend created space for my pain and lifted me into the light.

  29. Many thanks to Chester for sharing such a lovely essay so appropriate for this issue! Even though I no longer believe in a God who is involved with the lives of people on the earth, I do think it is very healing to throw your pain and grief out to the universe and call on those who have gone before and experienced what we are now experiencing. I don’t have to believe in the existence of something that can’t be proven in order to feel beneficial healing. For me, it’s more about the action of letting go than it is about a higher power having the ability to heal us. I must say, though, that things like Chester’s childhood experience with his tooth keeps me open to the possibility of a higher being who intercepts on our behalf. Thanks again, Chester!

  30. Chester, this is another powerful message. This article resonates so well with me as it was easy to insert myself into the event that you recall ed. You are a great word master and the words continue to flow like an opened faucet! Your writings are very descriptive and in my mind’s eye, I can picture the scenery and the flow of events as I read. Keep writing and keep sharing.

  31. Whether one does or does not “believe,” the faith that Reverend Freeman lives cannot help but inspire. For those of us who pray, his words capture truths that are universal. We all should be thankful for the childhood fall, a broken tooth, and the regeneration that steeled a faith he has spent a lifetime sharing. Let us rejoice in his and all of our prayers!

  32. This was magnificent. As a Roman catholic priest it was wonderful to feel such spiritual exuberance and light. I felt as though my faith was being nourished . I am in need the light right now because I feel lost in this world of renewed racism and pain which is so a washed in certain political party. I am reminded of the ole song” We have come this far by faith,” I must renew my faith.

  33. Chester,
    Your description of prayer with divine light has a specific reach upward for healing meaning for . Thank you for giving me the tools!!

  34. Thank you Father Freeman for sharing your Article “Pray with out Ceasing”. I believe in praying and can pass on my spiritual energy. As one human ages and our loved ones end their life journey and we continue our lives alone. It is comforting to know that our prayer are answers in so many different ways. If you call a Miracle, a Miracle, let it be and don’t question it. Throughout our life and sometime when times are difficult, a prayer are two irons out our problem and concerns and shine the light for guidance. We can’t always define our thought through prayers , but be assured our prayers are heard.

  35. As usual, I truly enjoyed Chester’s newest article. It rings so true especially holding people in the light which I am currently doing with my cousin who lost his wife, my dear friend. I am praying with him and sending him spiritual readings and just grieving with him. I believe I will pass this on to him if only to enlighten him with Chester’s writing which is worth it’s weight in gold. Thank you Chester!!

  36. Chester, as always, I love your thoughts! Your kindness – which I have experienced many times – shows through your every word. Considering the many hurdles Life has thrown in your path, your belief has remained strong and unquenchable. So when you speak of Faith and Spirit, I listen.
    Many times I have had sudden and strong thoughts about a friend. I now wonder if this may be a form of putting them “in the light”. When I follow through with a phone call, I often find that person has caught my vibes and often exclaims, “I was just thinking about you!”
    The power of prayer is a positive power we should use more often.
    As always, love you much and I’m sending good hugs (also a positive energy source – or as Bob and I call it Body Medicine ). Take care, dear friend!

  37. Chester’s words always resonate with me. I’m not the most spiritual person in the world, but his words have a way of reaching me and touching me. Thank you Chester.

  38. Chester speaks about the healing that prayer brings. His writing brings healing, too; it holds mercy and compassion. This is what faithfulness looks like. Something lovely is unfolding here among the comments, too — a slowly progressing meeting for worship, begun with these words about prayer and continuing with ministry they have inspired.

  39. I agree with Chester that keeping gratitude in one’s heart is a practical application of “prayer without ceasing.” Every life includes times of woe, times of joy, and the times in-between. An “attitude of gratitude” helps get us through it all.

  40. Thanks Chester. Your writings and story telling has such a great connection to real life experiences all can relate to. I especially relate to your account of how hymns, spiritual and gospel songs reflect prayer. You are blessed with this gift of relating to others through your faith. Thank you, again.

  41. I always enjoy Chester’s reflections on life, history and faith. He writes from the heart with sincerity and hope, which in turn encourages and enlightens me in my life.

  42. The words here reflect deep experiences, compassion and knowledge of our place in the universe with gentle guidance for bringing spiritual quests into our daily lives. Chester is a profound model for us all, and through his generous sharing, has brought help to those around him, yet again, in this article. I am especially moved by his thoughts on “pray without ceasing”.
    Thank you, Chester, from us all.

  43. Chester,
    Your intriguing article on the power of prayer has special meaning for me, which started when I was too young to really understand the ‘power’ of praying. Your article made me reflect on these early childhood experiences with prayer and how important it is in my life now. Thank you for your words.

  44. Chester is an extremely eloquent writer. Christians indeed are called to pray without ceasing, and I like the concept of holding another in the Light as a great avenue for doing that. It dovetails nicely with our church’s urging to see others through the eyes of Christ, while concurrently seeing Christ in those with whom we interact. We are charged with allowing God’s light to shine through us to illuminate our environment and shed His light on others.

  45. After reading an essay by Chester Freeman I feel reawakened, renewed, and re-inspired in some wonderful way(s). And this piece was no different. “Pray Without Ceasing” — such a beautiful gift… A must read!

  46. Chester, as many have said before me, you are an inspiration. I was not brought up using prayer as a way to connect with the universe. I always thought of prayer as supplication or asking for something that could be granted or not depending on how good I had been. The idea of holding people in the Light appeals to me as a simple way to connect with the known and unknown. And yes, I do believe there is a power in holding someone in the Light, a healing, a comforting, a connection with all that is.

  47. Chester,
    Thank you for your meaningful and reflective article. We all know prayer, based on our own experiences, observations, and results, but you laid it out in such a deep and beautiful way . Once you experienced the “tooth” miracle, how could you not know the true power of prayer. Prayer is sustaining. Thank you.

  48. Chester is spot on about the power of prayer. When I turn to God in prayer, I acknowledge that God’s will, will be done.

    Chester’s writing always makes me pause for reflection, which is very important in the fast paced world we live in. We need this reflection time so we can see God speaking to us and answering our prayers thru the family, friends and acquaintances that surround us.

  49. What a great article about the power of prayer. Being from a family that believes and have witness the power of prayer it’s good to read about your experience and how it affected your life. It’s also powerful to hear about the power your mother’s prayer. You showed how her power of prayer shaped your life. Many mothers have had that power and have changed the lives of their children. It’s also worthy to note, as you stated, we have the power to pray for others by sharing our faith in that power. While reading your thoughts I was thinking about the song, “Somebody prayed for me”, and all the times my life was affected by the prayers of others. Growing up in a small Eastern NC town in a broken family, I made it because of the prayers of others. Reflecting on my prayer for others, like the time my sixth year old daughter had brain surgery. Prayers brought her through without the effects her doctors had prepared us for. Another time was when a friend’s two year old daughter was diagnosed with a brain tumor, prayers gave her three more years of life. It’s amazing how prayers can offer a light for others but as you talked about the light, it’s only possible through faith. Sharing with others, helping them through trying situations, being there for them is showing your light and how God has bless you with the ability to do so. You show others what it’s truly like to be your brother’s keeper. May you continue to share your power of prayer and your faith and your light with others.

  50. I am always delighted when Chester publishes a new essay in Friends Journal. His clear and wise reflections both humble and inspire me. This piece is no exception. Just reading it deepened my spiritual life. So grateful.

  51. I can’t believe it has taken me so long to read this most wonderful article. Thank you, Chester, for sharing these inspiring thoughts. As a Reiki Master, I, too, believe in the power of prayer and have also had the experience of belief healing my body.Sne

  52. Chester
    You have a a way with words whereby I’m drawn into your spiritual journey. I do love the power of prayer and pray every day. You’re article was so uplifting . We all need the comfort and protection of peace and light in our lives and amongst people who need it….

  53. Chester, This article for me brought the LIGHT and its important to my heart & thoughts, and holding others in my daily prayers. Love the title,
    “Praying without Ceasing, ” simply putting everything in God’s hands and continually seeking Him in prayer. Wow!
    We attended the unveiling of the Underground Railroad stamps ceremony in Cambridge, MD. a week ago. A sheet of twenty, includes two Quaker abolishists women, Laura Haviland and Catherine Coffin who help 2000 escape slavery. UGR sheets available at your local P.O. They held others in the “Light “! A safe house with a LIGHT in the window.
    I am also reminded the “light” from the North star guiding them in the darkest nights. As the songstress once wrote, “This little light of mine, I am going to let it shine, let it shine!!’ Your words have reminded me to hold others and myself in the light so we all can experience God’s love.

  54. I have been very blessed to have Chester as a good friend for many years. Our talks are always inspiring and encouraging. Reading this article really spoke to me as I have wanted a better understanding of ” pray without ceasing “. I certainly do now after reading and contemplating! His detailed examples has broadened my understanding in countless ways.

  55. Thank you for this read Chester. I enjoy speaking with you when you come by and visit the school. This article hit home, I’m trying to do better with praying continuously and this is a huge help. The details provided will be a tool I use to help me as well as explain to my family.

  56. I love Chester’s treatment of the twin concepts of praying without ceasing and holding someone in the light. Although the miraculous reattachment of the tooth is alluring, he actually hooked me into the article with his clinical prelude on the nomenclature of prayer. I identified with the intercessory, nuances of continual prayer, but I actually felt as if I was being held in the light myself! A thoroughly inspirational article.

  57. Such a beautiful article. The power of prayer connects us all. This article is so uplifting. Thank you for always being so generous to share your writings.

  58. Once again Chester has taken us on a spiritual journey that’s uplifting , inspiring and very relatable . What a beautiful talented gift God placed within you .. Thank you Chester !

  59. I very much enjoyed this article. “pray without Ceasing” It reminded me of some of the things we take for granted on a daily basis. Growing up church for my family was mist every Sunday. The power of prayer is real. I remind myself as often as possible.
    Thanks Chester for the enlightment.

  60. Chester, thank you for this article on prayer. Holding someone in the light is equivalent of my idea of lifting someone up to the Throne of Grace. Your experience with the tooth show the strong faith of you and your mother and what a lesson in faith for a young man! This article is full of good insights and warrants printing it for future reading and contemplation. Thank you!

  61. Chester Freeman continues to impress me with his excellent writing. I hope that his work gains broad based recognition so that he will be able to extend his redership. This man can write!

  62. Chester Freeman has created an articulate and sensitive description of the power of prayer and what it has meant to him since early childhood. I hope we have the opportunity to read more of his insightful thoughts.

  63. Chester has sent me numerous articles he has written and every one touches the soul. Alway filled with encouragement and insight.
    Please continue to have articles by Chester. He never disappoints as they all come from the heart.

  64. Chester Freeman is a “soul-Brother” from our days together in seminary. Our friendship has withstood the test of time. After our lives branched out in different directions, causing us to lose touch for years, we are now reunited and not letting go! Chester is a mystic, a poet, a griot, a vessel of divine wisdom. When he started sending me his essays I was blown away. While we have yet to reconnect in person, each essay is like being with him; I feel the same closeness I remember from our days as seminarians in Rochester, NY. So, here’s what I wrote to Chester: Thanks for sharing this latest piece of your contemplative writing with me. I truly feel held in the light by your deeply spiritual reflections as I imagine myself included in your prayers from time to time. It is the sweetness of our connection. I love learning about your life as I read your articles. As I’ve said before, you are an amazing writer. Your words become visible in my mind and heart creating a synergy with you that defies distance, time, and place. You have a gift! What a gift you are to me! I send you love.

  65. Thank you for sharing this lovely meditation on the importance and power of prayer, Chester. We are the things we do everyday. Having rituals like prayer do tip the scales for us on the side of peace/

  66. I have just haas the opportunity to read this article during my meditation time this morning. Yes, this really speaks to me and is a wonderful way to begin my day. As a matter of fact I was seeking God’s wisdom through prayer. If I had to sum this writing up in a few words it would be “ GOD SEES ME AND HE HEARS ME.” Thanks so much! Love and Prayers❤️

  67. Thank- you Chester for your insight
    I was reminded of Graceand peace to with stand life’s difficulties Grace by which have received ehatevergiftswehave to serve one another Romans. 12:6
    I grew up in Episcopal background being spoken to and preached at school
    I attended Quaker Meeting with family
    High school we had a coffee house in a local congregational church Fri nite – we were of the streets for a little while anyway we watched movies ,music , guitar , singing with little supervision from the church
    I can think of prayers for my clients and family through my work in healthcare career
    Ive listened to an R and B station for years and they will play gospel music during the day occasionally
    So I joined a salt and pepper choir- singing alto
    Potters song refers to us as pieces of clay that may be put back together again if thru brokenness by God
    I have physically been away from my choir but I can download the music and lyric sheets and sing when I am walking and riding my bike
    When we attend M4W n zoom I will ask others to help me Hold Friends in the Light for joyful or sorrowful prayers
    I find MFWFB to be very deepening with folks onitting, coughing fidgeting
    We are collectively holding the meeting in the Light with less than 50-over 100 people
    I try to centre and still have difficulty at times most days I attend zoom meeting with folks all over the world

  68. Another fine article by Chester. As usual, it resonates with me as I am familiar with such experiences. “Standing in the gap” is still a common practice in the church where I am a member. When all else fails, prayer is the answer. Too often we do other things, seek advice from others when the solution is in praying for God’s will to be done.
    Keep up the good work, Chester!

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