Worshiping in our struggles
They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.” (31)
Worshipping Leads to Struggle
Here we have Paul and Silas on their way to the place of prayer were they cast a spirit out of a slave girl, which led them to cause an uproar in the city where they were beaten. Their lives of worship and advancement the kingdom of God did not lead to peace but more trouble. Do not think it strange that when you do the work of God, you will be rewarded with good things rather you might find more trouble because you are advancing the Kingdom of God and the devil will attack you right back. Paul’s zeal for God which led him to deliver a slave girl who had been possessed by a spirit only caused more trouble for them rather than praise. Which eventually lead them to be flogged and put in prison.
Worshipping Through Struggle
Acts 16:25 shows us that during midnight Paul and Silas who were severely beaten and put in prison were singing hymns to God and praying! What an incredible testimony of true worship! They had every right to complain, and blame God for the situation they were in. They could have wondered why they were suffering so much for leading a life of worship and advancing the kingdom of God. They could have focused all their attention on the fresh wounds they had on their bodies. Yet in spite of all this they both lifted their voice to heaven and praised God through their struggle! This is what worship in Spirit and Truth looks like, these men of God knew the secret of what worship really was. They didn’t worship God when everything was good, but they worshipped God through every situation whether good or bad. Also realize this, they were not worshipping God in order to be free, the prison doors flew open and they were set free, but I have to wonder if they knew this would happen. These men of God just lived a lifestyle of worship and this was all they knew, regardless of whether they will be free from their prison.
Worshipping From Struggle
Now we can see the culmination of what the result of their worship was, which was the salvation of the jailer and his household. So from their struggle this leads a whole family to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. God was working out an even greater ending through their pain and trial. Paul and Silas had no idea that God was using all of their pain to the saving of many lives. Understand that your struggle will lead you to worship God and others as well. The end result of your struggle will only lead you to the worship and glory of God as you maintain this attitude of worship. Never underestimate the power of worship and that in the end it will always bring Glory to God. From their struggle this lead non-believers to worship God as well in Spirit and Truth as well as giving their lives to Jesus!
So the next time you find yourself in a trying situation, rather than trying to figure out what is going on, let go and worship God. Paul and Silas didn’t need an explanation from Jesus they knew well enough that what they were doing would lead them to persecutions but this did not stop them from worshipping. It is easy to worship God when everything is going well, but the real test of faith is to maintain an attitude of worship when everything is coming against you and you seem powerless. In these times trust God and just worship him and exalt him above everything! Praise God!
Prayer: Gracious God help us to worship you in all our life situations, Amen.
Deepak Mathew, Epiphany MTC, NY.