Monday, October 19

The mystery of prayer

Scripture: Job 6-8, Acts 12

Observation

Acts 12 raises some questions about the mysteries of prayer.

James, the brother of John is arrested and murdered; Peter is arrested and delivered.  No doubt (although it doesn’t say so) the church prayed earnestly for both.  But only one was delivered.

After Peter’s deliverance, he went to the home of Mary where the church was gathered to pray.  When Rhoda announced that Peter was at the door, they didn’t believe her.  “You’re out of your mind,” they told her.  Evidently they didn’t have much faith that God would answer their prayer—but He did anyway.

I know that God answers prayers; I just can’t predict which ones.  I know that faith is important (Jesus says this clearly) and that lack of faith can impede prayer—yet not every time.  

Application

Here is my takeaway.  God resists being reduced to a formula.  He wants me to pray, calls me to pray, not just to get answers (He’s not a vending machine), but to know Him.  Even though answered prayer is a mystery, not something I can predict, I will pray—every day—to know the Lord.  And I will ask boldly, as they did for Peter’s deliverance—ask for miracles.  And then I’ll trust God with my requests to do what He wants.

Pray!

Prayer: Lord, help me pray!  Help me to know You, trust You and experience Your work in my life!