People act differently when they know they are being watched. They are MUCH more careful about what they say and do. That’s something that can be used to your advantage!
Some years ago I had travelled for ministry work to a less-than-hospitable nation. I arrived, was met by my host at the airport and we were escorted to a particular waiting area while some paperwork was processed. When we came to a corner in the hallway, my host slowed down a bit. As the officer turned the corner ahead of us, my host quickly turned around and, placing his finger in front of his lips, gave me the universal sign to be quiet. Then we also rounded the corner as if nothing had happened.
When we came to the holding area, took a seat, and the officer departed. My host pointed to one of the lights hanging from the ceiling, and cupped his hand behind his ear to alert me to the fact that we were under audio surveillance. “So, how was your flight? Any difficulties?” he asked in a jovial tone. And so began a rather phoney conversation for several minutes in which we chatted amiably about absolutely nothing of consequence. After some time, another officer came in, handed me my passport and announced that we were free to leave.
After we got to his car, my host explained that all of these holding rooms in the airport were “bugged,” and that the secret police had been listening to our conversation. He then proceeded to explain other times and situations where we could count on being secretly observed.
Not all surveillance is negative, of course. Some is protective. The prison where my son and daughter-in-law used to work has the correctional officers under surveillance at all times, too. Their goal is to provide a split-second response when assistance is needed, and also to alert the Correctional Officer on the cell block via radio if the surveillance officer notices something unusual or potentially dangerous. And if the Correctional Officer asks for assistance over the radio, and Emergency Response Team can be dispatched to render aid very quickly!!!
Your Heavenly Father has the same intent as His eyes roam to and fro across the whole earth to give strong support to those whose heart is blameless toward Him. He’s watching. He’s alert, His ears are open to the prayers of His children. He’s ready to give STRONG SUPPORT when needed.
Today’s verse says HE WATCHES OVER EVERYONE WHO IS FAITHFUL
God’s Emergency Response Team is awesome. When He dispatches His ERT to assist, nothing can hold them back.
One of my favorite stories about the prophet Elijah has to do with the time King Ahab got frustrated with his preaching and decided to have him arrested. The king figured a captain of the guard and fifty soldier should be more than enough to arrest an old man, prophet or not! The king figured wrong.
You can read all about it in the first chapter of the Old Testament book called 2 Kings. The captain shows up to arrest Elijah and says, “Man of God, the king says, ‘Come down!’” Elijah answered the captain and said, “If I am a man of God, may fire come down from heaven and consume you and your fifty men!” Then fire fell from heaven and consumed the captain and his men. The king heard about it and sent a second cohort. It was like hitting “replay” – same arrogant command from the captain, same result. Fire came down and consumed the second group. Well, obviously as stubborn as he was stupid, the King sent a THIRD cohort. The king may not have learned anything from his first two encounters with Elijah, but the captain of the third cohort certainly had. This third captain went up and fell on his knees before Elijah. “Man of God,” he begged, “PLEASE have respect for my life and the lives of these fifty men, your servants!”
God’s ERT is pretty good at hostage rescue, too. The apostle Peter was sitting in a prison cell, compliments of King Herod. He was chained to not one BUT TWO soldiers, while other soldiers guarded the door. When God’s ERT team showed up the chains fell off and the prison doors opened. The team leader told Peter “Put on your shoes, we’re leaving.” Peter and his escort exited the cell, walked past first one and then another guard post totally unobserved. Even the iron gate of the fortress that led to the city opened of its own accord as Peter approached.
When Paul and Silas found themselves held in the most secure cell of a Philippian prison, they were not worried. Even though their feet were in stocks, their lips were not. So they decided to SING to get the attention of God. His ERT showed up faster than you could say hallelujah! When the team hit the ground, they REALLY hit the ground!!! The resulting earthquake cracked the very foundation of the prison. And at once every door flew open and every chain fell off.
Any place. Any time. God’s ERT is ready to jump into action.
You are being watched. Because HE WATCHES OVER EVERYONE WHO IS FAITHFUL.