Prayers

Building-Shaking Prayers

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Written by wordpressadmin

Have you noticed that so many of our prayers are asking God to make our lives happier, make our loads lighter to carry, and make our paths easier to walk? Have you also noticed that the early church did not pray that way very often, if at all?
In Acts 4, we read about an awesome prayer time where these Christians pray for something totally different than lighter loads and easier walks. Peter and John are arrested because of the ruckus caused by the healing of a lame man and their subsequent preaching to the crowds. The religious leaders of the day were extremely agitated that people were responding to their preaching of the gospel. When they were brought before the religious leaders to explain what was going on, Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, proclaims the good news of Jesus to the religious leaders. These religious leaders ordered Peter and John to stop speaking about or teaching in the name of Jesus. Peter’s response was that they “cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard” (Acts 4:20, NIV). The religious leaders threaten them further and let them go.
Peter and John go back to their Christian friends and tell them all that has happened. The Christians do what Christians do when tough times come, they pray. But notice their prayer that is recorded in Acts 4:24-30.
First, notice what they didn’t pray for. After being threatened by the religious leaders, the believers didn’t ask God to make their way easier. They didn’t ask God to strike the religious leaders dead. They didn’t ask God to remove them from the difficulty. Sometimes God wants to save us through the struggles we are in, rather than saving us from the struggles we are in.
Second, notice what they did pray for. Acts 4:29 records this part of their prayer: “‘Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness’” (NIV). Did you catch that? Rather than asking God to make their path easier to walk, these Christians pray that God will give them great boldness in the midst of the threats. They ask God to use them in the struggles rather than remove them from the struggles. Few Christians pray for boldness when things are going great. These Christians pray for boldness when the threats are mounting against them and when the world is standing in opposition to them.
The passage goes on to say: “After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly” (Acts 4:31, NIV). Three very memorable events happen in response to their prayer. First, the building is shaken. Second, they are all filled with the Holy Spirit. Third, God answers their prayer and they speak the word of God boldly.
Because of their unbelievable prayer, God shakes the building, remakes their hearts, and takes over their mouths. Now that is an awesome prayer that is answered in an awesome way. Oh, that we would pray building shaking, heart remaking prayers.

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