Acts 6:4 Prayer and the Ministry of the Word
'But we will devote ourselves continually to Prayer and to the Ministry of the Word'. Acts 6:4
We will devote ourselves continually to Prayer
The first half of step eleven in the AA 12 step recovery program says: ‘sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him’. It is the experience of many that as we reach outside of ourselves towards a power greater than ourselves we begin to become God conscious. There is no blueprint for this reaching out in prayer and each of us has to experiment to discover our own pathway. Whatever the route we take the aim is the same and that is a continual connection with our higher power. If we have made the decision to turn our lives over to the care of God as we understand him then we need to pray for knowledge of his will for us and the power to carry that out. The Apostles put first things first when they made the decision to devote themselves continually to prayer. Even the most restless of us can learn to ‘be still’ and become conscious of God, because he is the rewarder of those who diligently seek him.
And to the ministry of the Word.
As we become conscious of God, we encounter truth. God is truth. God’s truth is searching and reaches deep into our hiding places and secret worlds. Our shortcoming and character defects get held up against the mirror of God’s purity and love, so that deep change becomes a possibility for us. With God all things are possible and if allowed, he will work miracles of change in our hearts and minds. We find that the truth is not our enemy but our friend as it sets us free to live the life that God intended for us. The ‘ministry of the word’ that the Apostles prioritised was focussed on helping people to encounter God. This took place through personal conversations, group meetings, informal teaching, preaching and dialogue.
Is dedicated to helping us to establish, develop and maintain our conscious contact with God. The purpose of each teaching is to have a deeper relationship with God and to experience his presence in our lives so that we can be a vibrant and creative presence on the earth.
Rev Dr Christopher Noble
Rector of St Mary's Stansted with Fairseat and Vigo and Voluntary Chaplain to Bridge House NHS Detoxification Treatment Center