"be joyful" - we must make a choice. We cannot determine how we feel in each situation, but we can control our reaction. How can we be joyful in spite of our feelings. We can do that by no allowing our feelings or current situation to interfere with our worship. Whatever the situation - w must intentionally and continually acknowledge the greatness of God - in the midst if our situation. hard - yes - but what an awesome way to experience the JOY OF THE LORD!
"pray continually" - pray for everything right when you think of it. Allow prayer to be a natural response to whatever is happening. Just like we do not "think" about breathing or making sure our heart is beating. The challenge, is to develop a prayer life that goes on and on in the background of our lives - no matter the circumstance.
"give thanks" - this is why we pray. To express our gratitude for God who He is and for all he has done. It is our choice to be thankful even in the tough times. We need to say thanks even when we cannot see the whole picture. Something good always happens when we thank God - We gain the mind of Christ and the leading of the Holy Spirit - we invite God to work in our situation.
Continue to pray, praise, and allow the joy of the Lord rise in your heart.
GRACE AND PEACE!