"The Lord is far from the wicked but he hears the prayer of the righteous" (Proverbs 15:29 NIV).
Peter was an apostle who totally realized how the prayer of the righteous could produce a miraculous event. According to Acts 12, Peter was imprisoned because he was a Christian and Herod, the king, wanted to persecute the Christians. Peter was guarded by four squads of four soldiers each. It was night and he was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with chains, and the sentries stood guard at the entrance. Then all of a sudden an angel appeared and told Peter to quickly get up and the chains fell off of his wrists. The angel led him out of the prison, to the outside of the city gates, and nobody even noticed. He ran to the house of Mary and pounded on the door. Rhoda answered and left him standing there. She ran back to tell the others who had been praying fervently for Peter's release. They didn't believe her when she told them that Peter was at the door.
What does this prayer have to do with you? First, believe that prayer is a mighty tool that is given to you to have a direct line to the Lord. He does answer your prayers, and you should be prepared when the answer comes. The people were praying for Peter, but lacked the faith to believe that an angel could release him. They should have known that nothing is impossible with God. You also should not limit Him to your reality. He can do things that are beyond what you can ever imagine. Second, you must trust the Lord to release you from whatever chains you have encircling your heart. It could be fear, insecurities, low self-esteem, bad habits, or a weakness you haven't surrendered to the Lord. Satan enjoys shackling your heart with all these burdens so that you feel as if you can do nothing about them. But as you see in this story, prayer can break those shackles completely off and free you from all the bad feelings that Satan would like to immerse you in. The Bible promises you that God does hear the prayer of the righteous, and you must believe that He listens and will rescue you. Only God has the power to free you, so you must believe and pray with all your heart that He will release you from every weakness that could imprison you and weaken your witness. Pray that God will help you, and you will see His mighty power work for you.
I know that you know all of my weaknesses and faults. Please help me to overcome them in your power so that I can be a better witness for you. I believe that you can do anything, and I give you authority in my life to change my heart in any area that isn't under your control. Thank you for being my strength when I am weak.
In Jesus' name,