A failure to ask ourselves some pertinent questions that are expected to challenge us into progress in life, results in age long self deceit and outright retrogression. (2Co 13:5) Be testing yourselves, if you are in the faith; be examining yourselves. You yourselves know that Jesus Christ is in you, do you not?-unless you fail to meet the test (ALT). Just as the speech of Peter gave him away to reveal his insincerity, empty boast and commitment to Jesus (Matthew 26: 73), many of our speeches in prayer, give us away in the face of our faith and trust in God.
In Acts of Apostles 12: 1-17, after Herod successfully killed James and saw that it pleased the Jews, he decided to proceed and kill the other Apostles one after the other. His next target, Peter, was arrested and locked up waiting for the day to be excommunicated. The church in their wisdom and fear (thinking that it was because they did not pray that made it possible for James to be killed) decided to gather to intercede on behalf of Peter. One would have thought that the whole of Roman empire should experience earthquake, since only Paul and Silas shook the prison yard (Acts 16: 25-26) but alas, the unbelief of those that assembled to pray was revealed, just as their speech gave them away. They said to the young maid that went to open the door for Peter “you are mad”. Both their speeches at prayer and the phrase you are mad gave them away because, out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks (Matthew 12: 34).
Deep down in their heart, it was obvious that they didn’t believe in what they were praying about, since when the miracle happened they did not believe but said the lady was mad. This implies that they were expecting something else perhaps, the news of his death.
I submit with all respect that they were playing all the while because they summarized the expectation of all they’ve been praying about in one phrase ‘you are mad’ (perhaps they never believed in the process). When Jesus finished praying at the tomb of Lazarus, (John 11: 41-43) He commanded him to come out. When Jesus finished praying on the mount (Matthew 14: 19) He broke the bread and it multiplied. When the Apostles finished praying in (Acts 4: 21-31) they preached the more with boldness. When Jesus finished praying at the garden of Gethsemane, He said nevertheless at thy will, and told the soldiers, I am he that you are looking for (Mathew 26: 39-42, John 18: 4-5). None of their speeches or actions after these prayer sessions shows betrayal of speech or unbelief, better still they acted knowing fully well that it is done.
Next time you want to pray, ask yourself if you believe God? After prayer, be desirous to know if you just finished praying or playing. Your subsequent actions and speeches will reveal what you just did.