The book Acts of the Apostles, widely believed to have been written by Luke, records a touching episode in Chapter 16 v 16- 31. Paul and Silas were going about their ministry of preaching and wining souls for the Lord in Macedonia. However, within their story is the story of a slave girl who was into divination, not by choice, but she had a master who made money from her evil works. She was a prisoner of her handlers who considered her an investment. To show that the spirit of the Lord was upon Paul and Silas, the spirit of divination confirmed that the two were servants of the Most High, exhorting people to listen to them. This went on for many days until she became a nuisance, an unwanted sideshow. Paul rebuked the spirit and it left her.
However, that was the beginning of the two men’s troubles. The girl’s handlers were so angry with their loss of income that they reported God’s servants to authorities. The two were stripped, flogged in public and sent to jail in shackles. After freeing a girl from her “prison”, the two were thrown into a physical jail complete with a guard. Because of their unwavering faith, the two did not pay attention to their fresh wounds and their present habitat. The Bible records that they sang the Lord’s praises into the night. And at about midnight, there was an earthquake that brought down the walls of the prison and unlocked the shackles. All the prisoners could have walked away to freedom because of the faith of the servants of God. The prison guard would have killed himself had it not been for Paul who assured him that everybody was still in.
The scriptures on Acts 16 v 29-34 say: The jailer called for lights, rushed in and fell trembling before Paul and Silas. He then brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved — you and your household.” Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all the others in his house. At that hour of the night the jailer took them and washed their wounds; then immediately he and all his household were baptised. The jailer brought them into his house and set a meal before them; he was filled with joy because he had come to believe in God — he and his whole household. [NIV]
Whatever situation could be of bother, man-made or natural, it is important that Christians remain steadfast in faith and prayer. The two gentlemen did not focus on their public humiliation, their flogging, their fresh wounds or the shackles. They did not regret for once that they had set the girl free. Everything that these apostles did was for the Glory of the Lord going as far as converting jailbirds and the prison guard, who later cleaned their wounds and set a table before them.
We are experiencing tough times and people are focusing on survival. Just be on the lookout in case some unscrupulous people exploit your helplessness. Not all impressive prophetic curriculum vitaes bring about results. However excruciating the pain might be, however vivid the hopelessness, or the anxiety, trust God in heaven to remember you when you exhibit unwavering faith. He will break all the chains and bring down walls, only you have to praise and ask in fervent prayer. Make your fears known to Him (Philippians 4 v 6). His grace is sufficient.