Acts 4:23-31 introduces us to a believers prayer. Peter and John had just come back from being questioned, threatened, and put in jail for miraculously healing a crippled man in the name of Jesus. After telling the other believers what had happened, they all decided to pray.
I would have asked God, “Why are you letting this happen?” Or I would want God to make them pay somehow, to stop the persecution. Prayer may not have been my first response.
The passage today says that they prayed that God would be glorified, praised, and honored. They were recognizing that God was in control of the situation; that He reigns over the universe. It was after this that they prayed for themselves, putting God first. The cool thing is that they didn’t pray the things I might have. They didn’t pray that God would stop the threats. Instead, they prayed that they would have boldness as they kept doing the things that got them persecuted. They were going to keep telling people about Jesus and they were going to keep healing in His name. They all left empowered by the Holy Spirit to go against the grain of what they were told.
God chooses normal, everyday sinners like you and me to tell and show others the way. May we not be afraid to share the good news when we’re feeling the nudge. Even if we’re not confident, we fumble over our words, or we fear persecution from others. The Holy Spirit will help us to use our own story to point people to Christ. Our words become His.