“This prayer meeting went on for several days. During this time, on a day when about 120 people were present, Peter stood up and addressed them….” Acts 1:15 (TLB)
Yesterday, we left the disciples, united in prayer with about 120 other Christ followers, waiting for the coming gift that Jesus promised. We also discovered the secret to effective waiting is prayer – united prayer. It’s been said that you can do nothing but pray until you have prayed, but you can do more than pray after you have prayed.
The disciples were being obedient to the direct command that Jesus had given them before He ascended into Heaven. They stayed in Jerusalem and waited. As they waited, they prayed together. Sometime during this prayer meeting, Peter realized there was some unfinished business that needed to be handled. With the loss of Judas, who had betrayed Christ and hung himself, Peter knew that there needed to be twelve men to witness at Pentecost to the twelve tribes of Israel. Also, these twelve men must be prepared to sit on the twelve thrones to judge the twelve tribes as promised by Jesus in Luke 22:28-30. Peter stood up and addressed the group about a replacement for Judas.
“‘So now we must choose a replacement for Judas from among the men who were with us the entire time we were traveling with the Lord Jesus— from the time He was baptized by John until the day He was taken from us. Whoever is chosen will join us as a witness of Jesus’ resurrection.’ So they nominated two men: Joseph called Barsabbas (also known as Justus) and Matthias. Then they all prayed, ‘O Lord, you know every heart. Show us which of these men you have chosen as an apostle to replace Judas in this ministry, for he has deserted us and gone where he belongs.’ Then they cast lots, and Matthias was selected to become an apostle with the other eleven.” Acts 1:21-26 (NLT)
This small band of believers was guided in prayer. They could do nothing but pray until they had prayed. But, after they prayed, God led them to act and to choose the twelfth apostle to replace Judas. When you find yourself in God’s waiting room of prayer, be sensitive to the promptings of His Spirit that may be directing you to act. Remember, you can do nothing more than pray until you have prayed, but you can do more than pray once you have prayed.