Fiercely Devoted

The book of Acts is the continuation of the resurrection story of Christ.  After His ascension, a wildly alive and unified band of disciples began to proclaim the good news of the kingdom in various venues and to all peoples.  They were deeply loyal to the truth of Christ as taught by the apostles.  They were together and had all things in common, even to the point of selling their possessions to meet the needs of others.  Breaking bread together in their homes resulted in unity and gladness.

But there was another vital component to their lives together: they were intensely devoted to prayer.  A reading of the book of Acts reveals to us the following characteristics of their prayers:

  • Their prayers recognized God’s sovereignty. They were thoroughly convinced that God was in control, and that His purposes were being fulfilled through them.
  • They prayed as they waited on God’s direction. These disciples were not following a “mission map,” they were creating one.  It was necessary that they be in tune with when and where the Spirit was leading them.
  • They prayed for strength and boldness in the midst of persecution. The political and religious culture was seeking to intimidate and destroy them.  They prayed for endurance, not for escape.
  • While praying they became aware of the Spirit commissioning them. Some in the group would be sent by the Spirit to different locations.  These were sent with encouragement and dignity.
  • It was prayer that diminished their apprehensions and prejudices. Prayer will provide peace in the midst of chaos.  It revealed what changes needed to be made in their personal character and attitudes.
  • Any type of ministry they participated in was preceded by prayer. They did not presume on doing God’s will their way.
  • Prayer caused them to focus on every detail of their lives as connected and significant. Daily living was seasoned with gratitude and worship.