7 And behold, an angel of the Lord stood next to him, and a light shone in the cell. He struck Peter on the side and woke him, saying, “Get up quickly.” And the chains fell off his hands. 8 And the angel said to him, “Dress yourself and put on your sandals.” And he did so. And he said to him, “Wrap your cloak around you and follow me.” 9 And he went out and followed him. He did not know that what was being done by the angel was real, but thought he was seeing a vision. (ESV)
For some reason I really enjoyed reading this verse. The angel “strikes” Peter in the side. No peaceful nudge and whisper in the ear with a glow over the angel’s head (a la Touched By An Angel). Peter wasn’t touched, he was struck! Couple things come to mind. 1) It was time to go. No sense in waiting around for the right “moment.” Get up Peter and go! 2) People were praying. This is an awesome testimony to gathered, corporate prayer. The answer to pray was an angel coming in to Peter’s cell and kicking him in the side to get going. 3) We all need a swift kick every now and then. I almost wonder if Peter was in a place of self-pity. Feeling so sorry for himself he was inconsolable even when the angel showed up, so the angel kicked him in the side. “Get a hold of yourself man! God has sent me to rescue you! Let’s go, work to be done…”
Do you need a swift kick to get moving on what God is ready to do in your life? I often do. First-pray, pray hard and pray with others…that reminds me, February 25th we’re gathering to pray together as a church. 2-Don’t get so self-absorbed that you become non-functional. God may be ready to move in your life, but you’re too busy wallowing in self-pity. 3-Go! If God is kicking you in the side, you better move!