“. . . but prayer for him was being made fervently by the church to God.” Acts 12:5
In the last hour, when all hope seemed lost when facing the final blow of defeat, they were delivered by a miracle. The miracle of prayer. The early Church had enemies. It faced incredible criticism. The Church’s only weapon in the face of opposition was prayer. They used that weapon and prevailed.
When Peter was imprisoned, the Church assembled to pray. Day and night they prayed in one continuous, uninterrupted stream of supplication. They poured forth their request to heaven.
The greatest force in the world is prayer, if we know how to use it. Prayer is the act of penetrating our natural situations with the supernatural presence of heaven. Behind our circumstance which appears to be a fixed fact, there is the spiritual fact of God’s power. Our confidence is in God’s intervening ability to change what otherwise looks hopeless.
The early Church’s daring act of prayer was born from the example of Jesus’ fierce resolution and reliance on the practice of prayer. We are too cautious, too timid in our praying, we make safe, small, tame requests of God. We hedge about in our asking to minimize the risk of unanswered prayer. But Jesus didn’t.
He never hesitated, never braces himself for disappointment. His prayers were always strong, clear, confident, and unwavering: “all things you ask, whatsoever you ask in prayer believing you shall receive.” “Whosoever shall say to this mountain, be taken up and cast in to the sea and does not doubt, but will believe the things which he says will come to pass, he shall have whatever he says.”
By prayer, mountains are removed. Mountains of prejudice, stupidity, selfishness, and ignorance. Prayer removes the falsehood of intimidating influences, ancient prisons of the soul and seemingly invincible fortresses of fear.
Where’s Herod’s empire now? Think of the audacity of the humble community of God daring to pray for the impossible against the material power with no other weapon but prayer offered in the name of Jesus.
Are you praying impossible prayers?