Encouragement for your daily walk with God
The church experienced difficult challenges in its early days. It drove them to their knees in prayer, and because of it, they witnessed many miracles. Acts 12 is an example of that. James had just been executed by Herod, and when he saw the advantage it gave him with the Jews, He thew Peter in jail to await execution.
Peter would later escape with supernatural help, but what intrigues me the most is how the Body of Christ, the Church, handled his imprisonment. They were in “constant” prayer for him [Acts 12:5].
The idea of constant prayer doesn’t have to do with a 24 hour prayer vigil. It wasn’t the timing of the prayer, it was the intensity of the prayer; passionate prayer from the heart.
The Greek word translated constant is ektenes [pronounced ek.ten.ace’], which means, ernest, strained. Another way of saying it is, they prayed with intensity. It’s the same word used to describe the Lord’s prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane [see Luke 22:44].
Our cute “Now-I-lay-me-down-to-sleep” prayers lack power because they are so laid back; there’s no passion, no intensity. Let me ask you, when was the last time you went to God with an intense, passionate desire?
Prayer that prevails is prayer with intensity—offered continually and passionately, from the heart.
Peter was therefore kept in prison, but constant prayer was offered to God for him by the church. Acts 12:5