So Peter was kept in the prison, but prayer for him was bing made fervently by the church of God. Acts 12:5
Once again, our country is about to cast its vote for another president. The heavy hitters in the political world are doing their best to strong arm the American people to sway the masses in their favor. The faces of politicians, those in favor of as well as those of the opposing parties, bombard our nightly news. It would be easy to fall under the belief that we the people are helpless under the powers that be. “But prayer” is God’s word to His people!
Here in this verse we see a triangle of awesome dimensions. On the one hand there is a hostile world attacking the church. On the other hand there is the weary church praying without ceasing. Above them both, a prayer-answering omnipotent God! The God who intervenes and overrules.
During this period of the early church let’s consider the powers that be. There was the power of Imperial Rome, the sinister violence of King Herod, the civil authority, the military, and the edge of the sword with the blood of the apostle James. Peter, the leader of the church was at that very hour in prison fastened with chains that no one could break and held behind doors which no one could open. Were the emotions of those early believers trying to discourage them that they were helpless against such circumstances?
Two words hold the key throughout every generation of those who’ve put their faith in God “but prayer.” This timeless and eternal truth opens to us the promise and the power of Him who sits on the throne. Angels to the rescue, chains broken, prison doors opened, saints set free, and Herod was struck dead. In the meantime the word of the Lord continued to grow and to be multiplied.
What is God’s word to you and to me over and against the personal, political, or problematic issues we face? Our daily time in prayer with the Lord is greater that all merely human deliberations because it brings GOD into the matter.
Prayer is not about impressiveness or grandeur. If offered in humility, we can and will grasp the real significance of persevering prayer. Our sense of values is transformed and our hope finds its foundation.
O Lord, help us as Your people to remember “but prayer!”