Tuesday, August 3, 2021

Acts 12:17 Devotion by Stephen Taylor

Acts 12:11,12

Then Peter came to himself and said, “Now I know without a doubt that the Lord has sent His angel and rescued me from Herod’s clutches and from everything the Jewish people were hoping would happen.” When this had dawned on him, he went to the house of Mary, the mother of John, also called Mark, where many people had gathered and were praying.


These verses come right after the angel of the Lord led Peter out of prison, but what’s interesting is that this wasn’t an instantaneous breakout but rather a process. What the Holy Spirit showed me this morning is that oftentimes, as the Lord is leading us to freedom, we can’t see it until we’re all the way out. The angel woke him up, broke the chains, led him past the guards, and opened the doors, yet Peter didn’t see it until he was fully outside of the prison! Then, it’s like a light switch, and boom, now he knows.


Have you ever felt that? You're struggling through something, and suddenly, deliverance! Take heart; you’re not alone! The Lord was with Peter all the way. The Lord didn’t punish Peter for not being able to see his deliverance in the middle of the trial but rather took him step by step through it, and He will do the same for you and me!


If Peter could have broken himself out of prison, then I’m sure he would have. He couldn’t, but his God and ours could and did! I just want to encourage you guys to not give up in the middle of the battle or stop just before the breakthrough or breakout! We are often too short-sighted to see the end, but our God sees the end from the beginning and has a plan to prosper His children and bring them into the fullness and power of His loving arms! The Lord sees you, He loves you, and one way or another, He will deliver you both in this life and the next!


Isaiah 46:10 – “I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come. I say, ‘My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please.”


1 Corinthians 15:57,58 - But thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ. So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless.


God bless! I love you all, but He loves you eternally more! Glory, honor, and praise now and forever to Papa God, Jesus Christ our King, and the Holy Spirit!


Acts 12:17

Peter motioned with his hand for them to be quiet and described how the Lord had brought him out of prison. "Tell James and the other brothers and sisters about this," he said, and then he left for another place.


The Holy Spirit brought this up in prayer this morning, and I felt led to share! This verse is in reference to Peter's miraculous escape from prison, in which an angel of the Lord walked him right out the front door! Maybe you are a little skeptical of this, or some may say, “Well, yeah, that’s because he is an apostle, but that couldn’t happen nowadays.” I may have thought the same thing until I met my boss, Jeff Carter.


Many years ago, Jeff was SENTENCED (not awaiting trial or pending a verdict but gavel slammed and sentence pronounced) to over 30 years in prison! For most people, this would have driven them into depression, self-pity, and deeper down the hole of drugs and pain, but let me tell you, not Jeff Carter. It drove him deeper into the arms of Jesus and to a point where he said, “If this is where I gotta serve You, Lord, then so be it!”


About two years into his sentence, a public defender filed a motion that I’m pretty sure no one thought would pass, but guess what? Our God isn’t bound by human laws and expectations! He moved the heart of the judge, and Jeff walked out the front door of prison much like Peter did many years ago!


I love yah, boss, and am so thankful the Lord redeems hot messes like us!!!


I say all this to prove a few points:


1) You are never too far gone.


2) There isn’t a spiritual, physical, or emotional prison that the Lord can’t deliver you from!


3) His ways are higher than our ways, so don’t let your circumstances determine your dedication and commitment to Christ! We have to serve Him with the same heart whether we are in the penthouse or the big house!


4) Notice how this verse ends: once the Lord frees you from that prison, He is going to take you where He wants you to serve! Cry out to the Lord and watch the walls come down, the chains fall off, and your life be made brand new in Christ!


Psalm 40:2 - He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.


God bless! I love you all! Glory, Honor, and Praise forever to Papa God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit!




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