Suddenly an angel of the Lord appeared and a light shone in the cell. He struck Peter on the side and woke him up. “Quick, get up!” he said, and the chains fell off Peter’s wrists. – Acts 12:7
As my neuromuscular disease has progressed, I have gradually lost strength in my muscles. The further away from my brain a muscle is, the quicker it has weakened. My legs were the first to lose most of their strength, confining me to a wheelchair when I was fifteen. At age 21, my diaphragm lost its strength, requiring me to use a ventilator to breathe. Now, my arms have also lost their strength. I type with a stick in my mouth because my hands lay useless on my lap. If I tried to raise my hand right now, it would feel as if heavy chains were holding it down.
When I began needing a ventilator, my heart also seemed chained. I felt a heaviness weighing upon me and despaired that there was no relief in sight. I had given up on life because all seemed hopeless. Thankfully, God came to my rescue. He reminded me of His love and rekindled my hope. He broke through the chains. Like Charles Wesley, I wanted to sing, “My chains fell off, my heart was free / I rose, went forth, and followed thee.” God’s amazing love set me free.
All around us, people live with heavy chains around their hearts. Satan and sin have kept them bound. God calls us to go into the world with His light to set the prisoners free. We need to share how Jesus broke through our chains and gave us a life worth living. We need to be God’s messengers to a world in need of truth. Let’s rise, go forth, and follow Him.