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  • Writer's pictureChristy Schuette

An Attitude of Praise

June 20

2 Kings 3-4

Psalm 73:13-20

Proverbs 16:10-11

Acts 16:1-15

An Attitude of Praise


“About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God and the prisoners were listening to them.”  Acts 16:25 HCSB


Paul and Silas were doing everything right.  They were evangelizing the lost throughout Europe, healing the sick, casting out demons, and following God’s leading at every turn and yet they were beaten and thrown into prison.  They might have expected that God would protect them because they were doing what He told them to do.  How could God allow them to be mistreated and imprisoned?  It seems logical that if you do the right things God will bless you and not allow anything bad to happen to you.  Unfortunately, that isn’t always how it works.  Often, we can’t see the big picture and we don’t understand God’s plans.  “For as the heavens are higher than the Earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.”  Isaiah 55:9 (NIV) Paul and Silas knew this, and they trusted God.  That night sitting in prison, they could have been grumbling and complaining.  They were probably in a lot of pain from their beating, and they were bound by chains which would be uncomfortable if you were not injured and must have been excruciating for them.  Instead of sitting around feeling sorry for themselves, they were praying and singing hymns of praise.  Ouch! That’s convicting.  I doubt I would have reacted that way.  I probably would have been telling the other prisoners that I didn’t deserve to be there and lamenting the unfairness of it all while sobbing about my cuts and bruises.


Verse 25 tells us that the other prisoners were listening to them.  They were paying attention.  The prisoners saw that despite their pain and horrible circumstances, Paul and Silas were praising God.  God saw them, too, and He acted on their behalf in a powerful way.  He sent an earthquake that opened the prison doors and loosed their chains.  As a result, they had an opportunity to witness to the jailer and his family, and all of them were saved.   If they had not been thrown in prison, this jailer and his family might have never come to know Jesus.  Our comfort and ease are not God’s number one priority for us.  He wants to use us to accomplish His purposes. Sometimes that may mean that we will be put in uncomfortable or painful situations.  We might be doing exactly what He wants us to do and find ourselves in difficulty.  People are watching how we react to the problems we face.  The challenge for us is to use that as an opportunity to praise Him and to testify about God’s faithfulness.  Our attitude makes all the difference.  If our goal is ease and comfort, then whenever we face difficulty, we will be shaken and we will question God’s faithfulness.  If, however, our goal is to accomplish God’s purpose in our lives, then we will look at every situation and evaluate how God might be using it to bring about His plans.  I’m not suggesting that all the bad stuff in our lives is caused by God, but rather that sometimes He does allow bad things to happen to bring about a greater good and that He can use everything we face for our ultimate good or the good of others. 


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