Acts 16:25-34 - About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them, and suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken. And immediately all the doors were opened, and everyone’s bonds were unfastened. When the jailer woke and saw that the prison doors were open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself, supposing that the prisoners had escaped. But Paul cried with a loud voice, “Do not harm yourself, for we are all here.” And the jailer called for lights and rushed in, and trembling with fear he fell down before Paul and Silas. Then he brought them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.” And they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all who were in his house. And he took them the same hour of the night and washed their wounds; and he was baptized at once, he and all his family. Then he brought them up into his house and set food before them. And he rejoiced along with his entire household that he had believed in God.
What is it that happens when we vocalize our gratitude for God? What is happening when the greatness of our Father is put into words and songs? Strongholds are shattered. Prison doors are opened. Salvation arrives in the hearts of those who witness what God is doing. For Paul and Silas, there is a literal manifestation of this truth as an earthquake undoes the doors of the prison they are in while they are singing hymns and praying. The principle that is present here works for us as well.
As we converse with God and declare who He is out loud in songs and testimony, two things happen. First, we invite Him into the moment. When we are praying, God is there listening and we are aware of it. And where there are two or more, there is more of Him there. You’ve probably been in services or groups of people where God’s presence was so strong you could almost touch Him. As we pray continually and know Him more we will see Him in all of our circumstances working to transform our lives. Second, when we pray and proclaim what God is doing out loud, we are witnesses and people hear and are moved by the stories. Salvation comes because people respond to our testimonies. Begin today to go beyond praying in your heart in silence and pray aloud. Sing loudly in worship whether at church, in your car, or at home. Let the world around you hear what God is doing in your life.
What do you think is the significance of praying and singing aloud?
What strongholds have been broken in your life as a result of your prayers and praises?
This week begin to pray aloud even in your quiet time. If you don’t sing at church, start doing so…even quietly. There is something powerful about voices singing to God.