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The Power of Prayer

Peter was therefore kept in prison, but constant prayer was offered to God for him by the church. Acts 12:5 (NKJV)

Have you ever prayed for something or someone and found yourself surprised when the prayer was answered? I think each of us has probably had this happen at some point of our Christian walk, and such was the case for a group of disciples as recorded in the Book of Acts.  King Herod, who had planned on killing Peter, had arrested him.  Constant prayer had been given for Peter’s release by the church (Acts 12:5).  

At some point late in the evening God answered their prayers and the chains once holding Peter captive fell from his body.  Peter made his way to the home of the mother of John, where a group of believers were praying for him.  A girl named Rhoda came to the door where she heard Peter’s voice. Filled with joy she ran to tell the others, but they did not believe her—in fact, they accused her of being “Beside herself,” and then reasoned it was not Peter but an angel (Acts 12:15). 

So why did these Christian people pray, but then doubt their prayers as being answered?

The bible doesn’t tell us the reason, it just tells us their response to their answered prayer. I think we can find ourselves doing the same thing at times when we pray for others, especially when the prognosis is bleak for them.   I think this can happen when we use prayer as a last resort for help. But it is important for us to remember prayer isn’t really the answer to our problems, God is.  

We use prayer as a way to speak to God; it is just the vehicle with which we do this.  We need to look to God and His perfect plan, and be fully confident He will lay upon our heart the perfect prayer to bring before Him.  When we bring a request in alignment with Hiswill, we can have the peace and assurance it will be done in His perfect timing.

Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him. 1John 5:14-15 (NKJV)

God had a specific plan for Peter’s life, and He has a plan for each of our lives as well.  We could look at our circumstances and view them as bleak or even terminal from our perspective.  It could be a job, a relationship, or even a health issue. It can be a number of things, but we should be praying about every one of them.  We need to believe in the power of prayer, and we need to trust in God’s perfect plan for our lives.  When we trust in Him we will have a perfect peace (Isa. 26:3)

I want to encourage you today to begin to make a prayer journal.  Start to write down your petitions before God, and then write down when these prayers are answered.  Ask God to show you how and what to pray for, and allow the Holy Spirit to lead you.  Let’s be as happy as Rhoda as we rejoice in the fruit of our answered prayer. 

STUDY QUESTION: What can we learn about our prayers from 1John 5:14-15?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Do you trust in God’s perfect plan for your life?

PRACTICAL APPLICATION: Submit yourself to God and trust in Him completely.  You can have confidence knowing He is working in every situation. 

PRAYER FOR TODAY:Father, I want to thank You for Your perfect plan for my life.  Thank You for letting me know this truth through Your Word.  I trust You, and I fully submit my life unto You today.  Help me to have Your perfect peace as I keep my mind fixed upon You and trust You.  In Jesus’ precious name, amen…


Blessings upon your day, Pastor Scott




Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000