Wednesday, 16 April 2008

Acts 16:23-27 - Eleven fifty-nine

'After they had been severely flogged, they were thrown into prison, and the jailer was commanded to guard them carefully. Upon receiving such orders, he put them in the inner cell and fastened their feet in the stocks.
About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everybody's chains came loose. The jailer woke up, and when he saw the prison doors open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself because he thought the prisoners had escaped. But Paul shouted, "Don't harm yourself! We are all here!" '


At 11:59, I was in pain. Surrounded by darkness, in the corner of a dark room. Not knowing what was happening.

At 11:59, my tears were streaming. I couldn't stop crying, I needed someone to hear my cry.

At 11:59, my house was no longer the home it had been. Everything fell apart.

At 11:59, the drunkard lies on the streets with only a bottle to keep him company.

At 11:59, the victim takes some more abuse. Every word or action cuts like a knife.

At 11:59, believers with no sense of direction are lost in the maze. Their map is lying somewhere a few yards back.

And at 11:59, Paul and Silas were put in jail; feet in stocks; bound with chains; guarded like criminals.

But....

At midnight, my pain was healed and the blinding sun shone through my window.

At midnight, my tears were wiped. My voice was heard. My soul was stilled.

At midnight, the house I called home is once again a happy place, a welcoming place, a safe place.

At midnight, the drunkard is taken in; he's given a hug, a warm cup of soup and a comfy bed.

At midnight, the victim is not a victim anymore. The victim is free at last.

At midnight, the maze walls are torn down; the way becomes clear, more so than it ever did.

And at midnight, Paul and Silas were singing, were praying, were witnessing - and, once the ground shook, the prison doors opened and their chains were LOOSENED!

GOD FREED THEM FROM DANGER!!

It was His touch that healed the hurting; His presence that saved the lost; His ears that heard the crying - and His grace that sets me FREE!

Hallelujah!