By: Darrelyn L. TuttToday's Meditation: Acts 16:19-26"And when her masters saw that the hope of their gains was gone, they caught Paul and Silas, and drew them into the marketplace unto the rulers, And brought them to the magistrates saying, 'These men, being Jews, do exceedingly trouble our city, And teach customs which are not lawful for us to receive, neither to observe, being Romans. And the multitude rose up together against them: and the magistrates rent off their clothes, and commanded to beat them. And when they had laid many stripes upon them, they cast them into prison, charging the jailor to keep them safely; Who, having received such a charge, thrust them into the inner prison, and made their feet fast in the stocks. And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them. And suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken: and immediately all the doors were opened, and everyone's bands were loosed."Acts 16:19-26-----Ladder Rung: A1619SA and S are the first and last letters of Acts.Selection of words to aid in memory:Active Stance.Paul and Silas maintained an active stance in their expression of faith regardless of the place they were brought to.16:19 is our reference.At 1:00 PM we''ll rehearse our passage x6 in different forms (whispering, singing, speaking aloud, etc.)We'll encourage 1 other individual with our meditation.We'll meditate on our passage at 9:00 PM before drifting to sleep.------The healing of a damsel possessed by a spirit of divination precedes this passage and is the reason for the beating given to our beloved Paul and Silas.No longer a servant to the men who were using her for monetary gains, the damsel is safely transferred from darkness and brought into light. The damsel's testimony is a glorious one that no man could prevent.Mmmm ...Paul and Silas paid a "physical" cost for the damsel's healing, but in so doing, delivered a soul from the depths of hell.Rather than bemoaning the physical agony they endured, they made their prayers and praises to be heard in the prison and, at 12:00 midnight, when most were asleep, the disciples proclaimed the goodness and glory of God.-Something wondrous happens, when in our moment of distress and duress, we find ourselves captivated by a power surge translated from heaven into our souls.-Something wondrous happens when all of earth's niceties are removed from us and, we are instead, received into a higher place of exacting confidence.-Something happens when prayer exalts itself over our problems and praise promotes itself over our position.Gloriously,Wondrously,Emphatically, Decisively ...God's holy ear hears, His sovereign eye sees, and His holy soul sings.God loves the vision of men intent on Him!-----In this particular scene, God sovereignly administered the miraculous movement of an earthquake which shook the very foundation of the prison:The doors came unhinged,The bands of the prisoners were loosed,And Paul and Silas were free to flee ... but they didn't (Tomorrow's meditation.)And the power of God was readily conveyed and understood by all those who housed these prayerful, praising prisoners.Isn't it just so inspiring, dear friend?-----Maybe you feel yourself in a prison of sorts where life is buggerishly difficult and the self-pity bug has bitten.Can we stand up together, praise God together, and lift up our prayers to the One who sanctions, ordains, and stations us in the place where obedience has brought us ... and simply exclaim over the greatness and goodness of God?Can we abandon thoughts of self and situate them on the One who sustains?Can we praise when chains bind us, shackles hold us, people hurt us?As my friend so aptly expresses,"You bet."Go after God in prayer and praiseworthy, passionate pursuit:You'll feel the ground quake,You'll feel your heart shake ...You'll experience a release of God's power. -----Holy and stationed God,My heart adores and loves You.Forgive my neglect to alter my position through the glorious entrances provided me through prayer and praise.For this moment let my soul sing of Your goodness and constant mercy.For this moment let thoughts of self be replaced with thoughts of my Savior.For this moment let me experience grace.For all that Thy hand hath procured and secured for me,Thankfulness is offered Thee.Position me to see the heights of Thy glory.Amen.
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