Thursday, August 12, 2010

Praying and Singing in Prison

“About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them.”

~Acts 16:25 (NIV).

The Holy Spirit pulsed within these two wherever they went; even captive in prison. They’d been incarcerated out of abject injustice, having previously set a demon-possessed slave girl free of the evil spirit demonising her (verse 18).

Still, Paul and Silas are not defeated—they’re unperturbed and in joy!

These leaders of those of The Way, those sending the gospel of Jesus into Philippi, were spiritually comfortable anywhere because they had such a tremendous Presence of the Spirit with them.

This is a ‘Willed’ Reality

When the will of the mind believes and therefore holds to the truth that it believes—a truth of God, no less—all things in that belief are possible for that mind.

True belief begins in the mind; the mind then informing the heart; the heart then adding battalions behind it—the force of ten thousand wildebeest in stampede for rites of faith. The heart powers the mind, the mind directing or steering the heart; both working in unison.

Paul and Silas must have discussed how they would approach their imprisonment.

They must have agreed that this calamity was, again, another perfect opportunity to show the Spirit of Jesus off—that despite the perilous injustice, they could sing... despite losing their freedom they’d not wallow, but pray to their God.

When they agreed beforehand to do these things, they joined their wills together with the Spirit of God commending them—“A cord of three strands is not quickly broken” (Ecclesiastes 4:12c [NIV]); God’s agents into the fore!

Planning and Making Decisions

The trouble with most of us is we’re still so swayed by our unchecked emotions. This is not a criticism as much as it’s a reminder. God is never more with us than when we’re thinking sensibly and logically in our trials and struggles. This is not denying our feelings as much as it’s re-directing and doing something good with them.

This issue gets us down to proper perspective—seeing things the way they truly are. We are blessed to develop our passion for this... to see truly... to see what the majority can see... to see what God sees... and then do what’s necessary or do what we can do.

And that’s just about all that doing God’s will is.

Thinking in these ways, we can conceive a mode of thinking that can succeed and abide with us under basically all circumstances. Nothing truly is beyond us when we think in these ways.

© 2010 S. J. Wickham.

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