While reading through Acts 4, the Lord revealed a truth to me that I thought I'd share. Have you ever read Acts? It's pretty powerful.
Peter and John were preaching the gospel and healing in the name of Jesus. The rulers did not appreciate this but also could not deny evidence of Christ's power through these men. Because of the large amounts of people who were following Jesus as a result, the rulers really had "nothing to say in opposition". I would like to think they were scared. :)
So the rulers came up with a plan - threaten these men, not once, but at least twice - as verse 21 says "when they had further threatened them, they let them go" and here's the cool part - "finding no way to punish them, because of the people, for all were praising God for what had happened."
Who knows what the rulers threatened them with...their family's lives, friend's lives, money, food, house, slavery....we don't know. But Peter and John told their friends and instead of getting angry for being treated unfairly - for being persecuted - they prayed. Here's the part of their prayer that spoke to me:
"And now, Lord, look upon their threats and grant to your servants to continue to speak your word with all boldness (verse 29)." They didn't pray for deliverance. They didn't pray for revenge. They prayed simply for boldness to continue the work of Christ. Wow!
So that made me think. Have I been praying for deliverance? For revenge? (ok, so I might not word it like that but you know what I mean) God help me...help me to have the trust of your people in Acts. Give me boldness.