The night before Peter was to be put on trial, he was asleep and bound by two chains. A soldier was guarding him on each side, and two other soldiers were guarding the entrance to the jail. Suddenly an angel from the Lord appeared, and light flashed around in the cell. The angel poked Peter in the side and woke him up. Then he said, “Quick! Get up!” The chains fell off his hands, and the angel said “Get dressed and put on your sandals.” Peter did what he was told. Then the angel said, “Now put on your coat and follow me.” Peter left with the angel, but he thought everything was only a dream. Acts 12:6-9 (CEV)
If you get this scenario right you see a man about to face a trial, which has been prearranged to end in his beating and/or execution. He is bound by chains, guarded by at least four soldiers and the guy is SLEEPING! Call me old-fashioned, but I’d have been walking the floor, wringing my hands and hollering for my attorney!
But that’s me – not Peter.
Peter had seen a dead man walk; he’d eaten fish with him a few days after the man was executed and buried. And he’d heard the promise of the Lord who would always be with him. Peter was not impressed with the guards and chains, or the government’s promise of death.
So…why did it seem like a dream that an angel had shown up and orchestrated a jailbreak? It must be that when you can trust like Peter had learned to trust, miracles happen…but they’re still so amazing it still knocks your socks off!
Most of us aren’t awaiting execution. But there are things that keep us awake at night.
That stuff isn’t like the point of a sword forbidding us to move, yet we fear and tremble over the calamity we know is just waiting to swallow us whole! And, truth be told, when we get relief from some of it in unexpected ways, we marvel and exclaim how God has blessed.
Truth is…we’ve got nothing on Peter. He could sleep at the foot of the executioner! It was because he was trusting in the one who had taken everything death could do and defeated it with plenty to spare.
Give yourself a faith-lift this evening when you go to bed. Imagine you’re at the feet of the guy who pulls the switch on the electric chair. Then smile and get a great night’s sleep.