Pastor's Corner
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REF: ACTS 16.25-34; ACTS 12.3-7
As we continue with our annual theme of season for open doors, today we will share on prayer as the key that open mission outreach guided by Acts 16.25-34 and Acts 12.3-7. From these two passages, peter and Paul were preaching the good news of Jesus Christ when they were arrested.
Their arresters thought that by arresting them, they would stop their mission of reaching out to people and winning them to Christ. In acts 12, Herod had just executed James the brother of John and he was thinking that he would execute peter too as a way of stopping the gospel. We read that while peter was in prison, the disciples spent day and night in prayer. One day before peter was to be executed, the believers were praying in the house of Mary, the mother of john mark. Peter was sleeping between two guards and to make sure that he did not escape, he was made to sleep in chains. God heard the believers’ prayers and sent his angel who went and removed the chains from peter and led him out and left him near the house of Mary. Through prayer, Peter was released to go and proclaim the good news and many people gave their lives to Christ.

In Acts 16.25-34, we read that Paul and Silas delivered a slave girl from some evil spirit of divination. The owners of the slave girl were so annoyed because they used to get money from her divination activities like fortune telling. The owner of the slave girl seized Paul and Silas and charged them of causing commotion. The authorities were determined to stop Paul and Silas from proclaiming the good news and hence had them not only flogged but also put in prison. We read that at midnight, Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns while other prisoners were listening to them. As they continued praying, there was an earthquake that shook the whole prison and the doors of prison were flung open.

We read that the Jailer was so scared that the prisoners had escaped but when he found that none of them had escaped, he believed in Christ and he and his whole family were baptized. When the authorities heard what had happened, they ordered for the release of Paul and Silas and actually apologized to them for having them flogged before trial yet both were roman citizens. Prayer opened the way for Paul and Silas to be released to go and do the mission that God had given them.

Just like in the new Testament times, prayer remains key that opens doors for mission outreach. When we pray God gives us the will, the strength and even the resources to go out and proclaim the good news of healing, reconciliation, renewal and reconstruction of believers hearts. God gave us the great commission and He command us to fulfil it but we cannot fulfil it without God help which comes out of fervent prayers. So, if we want to succeed in doing the mission that Christ gave unto us, let us make prayer our lifestyle. It is not in vain when we pray because prayer opens the key to outreach, the main purpose Christ has given to the church on earth.