Have you ever baked or cooked an item and soon after tasting the unsavory concoction, realized that you had forgotten to include a key ingredient? Needless to say, the item soon found its way in the trash can. Many times, we approach prayer in the same way. We understand the importance and necessity of prayer but oftentimes, we fail to include a key ingredient.
In Acts 12:5-17, we find that Peter has been arrested and cast into prison. This was after the church had experienced the stoning of Stephen, the death of James, now their leader was in prison. This was an emotional time for the church; a time of great uncertainty, disillusionment, and loss. But the church understood that prayer was the only answer for Peter. And so the church prayed. The bible tells us that in response to their prayer, God sent angels and delivered Peter. Once released, Peter made his way to where the church was praying. “And as Peter knocked at the door of the gate, a damsel came to hearken, named Rhoda. And when she knew Peter’s voice, she opened not the gate for gladness, but ran in, and told how Peter stood before the gate. And they said unto her, Thou art mad. But she constantly affirmed that it was even so. Then they said, It is his angel.” Acts 12:13.
What was the purpose of this prayer meeting – what was the reason why they gathered together to seek the face of God? It was for God to deliver Peter. Then why was it that when Rhoda informed them that Peter was standing at the door that at first they called her mad and then declared that it was his Angel?
Why the unbelief- why did they not accept the miracle at first, believing that God had answered their prayer- that Peter had been delivered, released and was now at the door. All they had to do was open the door to receive their miracle
It is because they forgot a key ingredient: faith. The church allowed the circumstances that surrounded them to rob them of faith and as a result, they could not see the miracle for what it was and so they were willing to settle for less. They were willing to settle for a substitute; willing to settle for the appearance of the miracle instead of embracing the true miracle. It wasn’t until faith broke through and the gate was open to allow Peter to enter, that the true miracle was realized.
Prayer without faith is just empty words but prayer with faith moves God to work upon our behalf.
Matthew 21: 22
And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.
Don’t settle for less. Don’t settle for the appearance but not the true miracle. Let your prayer mix with faith, believe, and see what God will do.