Welcome Home – 40 Day Fast Devotion #3

Patient Prayer
Acts 1:14
They all joined together constantly in prayer, along with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brothers.
The time between Jesus’ ascension and Pentecost must have been a confusing and strange time for the disciples. They had been told to ‘go into all the world and make disciples’, but first, they were to wait in Jerusalem for the ‘promise of the Father’. Their Lord was gone, and now they had nothing to do but wait. 
In this little verse we catch a glimpse of the secret to the power and testimony of the early church. ‘They all joined together constantly in prayer’. This is what to do when there’s nothing else to do. 
A waiting church should be a praying church. A waiting people should be a praying people. Don’t just wait – pray! As the antenatal church sat together, gathered in an upstairs apartment in Jerusalem-town, they gave themselves to prayer. Men and women together, including Mary, Jesus’ mother. 
In times of uncertainty and confusion, it is wrong to think there is nothing we can do. There is always something to do. It’s just that we don’t consider prayer a form of action. Yet, it clearly is. Before there was a sermon to preach, a life to reach or a soul to be won, there was a gathered group of faithful people praying. This discipline would provide the power and the insight for the evangelism and invitation that would come in the weeks, months and years ahead. 
Our value of prayer will determine the effectiveness of our words and actions. If we don’t pray, we won’t see the full extent of what wants to do. This is not because God is bound or somehow unable, but because we are! Prayer positions us in a way that allows God to use us more fully. It aligns our spirit with His and our mind with His. Our actions carry more weight and significance when they have been soaked in prayer. 
Even as we wait, let us not give up praying together, as we seek to carry his heart through evangelism and invitation to our community. 
Reflective Questions:
  1. How might you position yourself between now and Easter to spend more time in prayer?
  2. Why do you think it’s important to gather with the church as our morning prayer meetings begin?
  3. Are there any obstacles in the way of you being present at one morning prayer meeting each week over this fast? How might you creatively overcome these obstacles?