In Acts 4:31-33 we read, “And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God, with boldness. And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul…And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all.” Would you notice again the phrase in verse 31, “And when they had prayed, the place was shaken…”
Years ago an account concerning the installation of a new organ in a New York City church appeared in the local newspaper. It was a rare and costly instrument. Its throat of many pipes was capable of pouring forth glorious melody in a multitude of different shades and tones. However, the first Sunday it was used, very early in the service, the electric current required to operate the console was cut off.
The organist was helpless to do anything about it, and the great majestic organ fell silent. A call for help was made and soon an electrician appeared on the scene to see if he could locate the short circuit. He made a quick investigation and saw the difficulty could soon be remedied. A note was hurriedly scribbled and passed to the organist. It said, “After the prayer, the power will be on!” Of course, the electrician did not realize the hidden, spiritual truth expressed by his simple words, but the organist immediately recognized he had written more wisely than he knew. Indeed, “After the prayer – the power!”
A prayer-less Christian is a powerless Christian. A church that works without prayer may have much activity, but it will exhibit little spiritually; there may be many programs full of activities for all ages and a grand worship service, but there will be little, if any, power. I have often used the following quote,
“When we rely on organization, we get what organization can do; when we rely on education, we get what education can do; when we rely on eloquence, we get what eloquence can do; when we rely on programs to attract the church crowd, we get the fun or inspiration for the moment that program will give, and so on. I am not disposed to undervalue any of these things in their proper place. But “when we rely upon prayer, we get what God can do!”
Apostasy and the lack of power begin when the inner closet of prayer is neglected or forsaken! Remember, “Prayer moves the Hand that moves the universe.” As you think through the principle of the above story meditate upon the hymn written by the gifted William Cowper, “God Moves in a Mysterious Way.”
Pause to thank God for the various, and perhaps unusual ways He has directed your life to this very moment. Resolve to trust Him more fully in prayer in the days ahead.
God moves in a mysterious way His wonders to perform;
He plants His footsteps in the sea and rides upon the storm.
You fearful saints, fresh courage take:
The clouds you so much dread are big with mercy,
And shall break in blessings on your head.
Judge not the Lord by feeble sense, but trust Him for His grace;
Behind a flowing providence faith sees a smiling face.
Blind unbelief is sure to err and scan His work in vain;
God is His own interpreter, and He will make it plain.
In His Amazing Grace,
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