“Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us..” – Ephesians 3:20 (NIV).
It is said that while the Nobel laureate Nelson Mandela was being held in jail at the Robben Island he stood tall over his jailers moved by his personal conduct and courage that they started looking up to him. During his last missionary voyage (Acts 27) where he encountered a shipwreck the Apostle Paul too because of his faith inspired all those around him, including his jailers.
After the ship with its 276 sailors on board had been battered by the storms and gloom had taken over with little hope of survival, Paul rose and decided to encourage the men around who were all downcast. “But now I urge you to keep up your courage, because not one of you will be lost; only the ship will be destroyed” (verse 22).
What gave Paul so much hope and confidence in spite of the fact that theirs was a sinking ship was not only because God had told him all would be well ( verse 23) but also because he had seen the hand of God rescue him innumerable times when pressed against the wall. Once he and his travelling companion Silas were arrested and flogged for preaching the Gospel, only to be miraculously let loose while in jail. “About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everyone’s chains came loose” (Acts 16: 25-26). This was one reason why he was so calm and collected as the ship sank.
But just like Paul anyone who has walked with Christ must have too experienced times before when God rescued him out of what was seemingly an impossible situation. It could have been a matter where the powers had ruled against you and everyone was saying your case was closed only for the Lord to open it up and bring victory to your side. There could have been a moment when you run out of finances and you were at wits ends only for the Lord to release a financial breakthrough. Medically the doctors might have given the verdict that the case was up only for the Lord to breathe a new life.
The scripture tell us that when the jailer saw how Paul and Silas were let loose in prison he was so astonished that he fell on his knees and begged, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” (Acts 16:30). Even now during the ship wreck Paul’s jailers astonished by his faith started looking up to him. The centurion ordered his soldiers not to execute the prisoners because of the faith he had seen of Paul (verse 42- 44).
Today may our faith rise above circumstances just as was Paul. We have this faith because we have seen God at work before and will now not fail us. While others may lose hope and despair we hold our heads high above storms because we know our God is faithful and able.
Prayer for today: Lord father God of Abraham, I look back and see how you have carried me through before, so, I have the faith that whatever situation I am facing, you will save me and bring victory, for the glory of your son, Jesus Christ.