WHAT A DAY
ACTS 16:22-26 NKJ
22 And the multitude rose up together against them: and the magistrates rent off their clothes, and commanded to beat them.
23 And when they had laid many stripes upon them, they cast them into prison, charging the jailor to keep them safely:
24 Who, having received such a charge, thrust them into the inner prison, and made their feet fast in the stocks.
25 And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them.
26 And suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken: and immediately all the doors were opened, and every one's bands were loosed.
Ever have a day where pretty much everything goes wrong? You just want to come home, find a quiet place and veg out or just go to bed.
Paul and Silas had a crazy day that ended in a miraculous way.
They delivered a demon-possessed girl and were arrested. Then their clothes were ripped off, and they were publicly beaten with rods. But wait, there's more. Paul and Silas were thrown into prison, into the deepest darkest part. To top it off, their feet were placed in stocks. Forget a hot shower and a bowl of ice cream to end the day. They are hurting, bleeding, and now stuck in a dark, stinking prison. If there ever was a time that these men could have questioned their calling or even questioned God's goodness, it would have been this day.
So, what did they do? They prayed and sang hymns to God. I have to admit I am impressed, and evidently, so was God. He sent an earthquake that shook that prison, and everyone's chains came off. They wound up reaching the jailer for Christ and leading an entire family to salvation.
What a day!
The tendency after a tough day is to hole up and lick our wounds. We've all done it, but it's only marginally helpful. To pray and worship God even in a tough time is one of the greatest things we can do as believers. We may not experience an earthquake, but we certainly position ourselves so much better for God to move on our behalf. Complaining will not get us where we need to go. It's easy but not effective. Praying and worshipping God is the strong way to end a bad day.
Dear Father, teach me how to respond as someone who trusts You. You are my hope and my strength in good times and in bad.