thought for the month

Here, every month a different contributor will give a distinct perspective on faith

Thought for the month of July

Thinking about prayer, there is a sentence in Revelation 8v1 which mentions that "there was silence in heaven for about half an hour".  

Thirty minutes doesn't seem long in terms of eternity, but in the context of this vision it suggests to me an astonishing thought.  The impression given in chapters 4 and 5 is one of ceaseless worship being offered to God by the inhabitants of heaven:  "Day and night they never stop saying; 'Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty..." (4v8) 

But then, for half an hour, God calls for silence, and we read that an angel offered much incense, with the prayers of the saints, on the golden altar, and they "went up before God from the angel's hand". (8v3-4)

I am confronted with the intriguing thought that God called a halt to the outpouring of adoration and praise so that he could listen to the prayers of God's people and respond to them.  

In the powerful symbolism of this extraordinary book, I come away with the reassurance that, however faltering and inadequate my prayers may be, God is listening to what I have to say, that He might somehow incorporate it in the action He graciously and wisely takes to bring His kingdom in.  This encourages me greatly, and I hope that it might encourage others too."  


With every Blessing