“There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of the band called the Italian band. A devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, which gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God always” (Acts 10:1-2).
The life of Cornelius proves that God seeks full-hearted devotion, obedience, and ceaseless prayer. Consider the ways in which this devoted man of God saved his house and the miracles his devotion wrought.
Cornelius was so determined that he and his house come into God’s fullness that he actually neglected eating in order to seek God. Food was secondary to his deep spiritual hunger and longing for God. Days of fasting without a corresponding hunger and thirst for God avails nothing; in fact, it is better to eat than to fast in an effort to earn blessing from heaven. But hunger for God takes the edge off the desire for food for a man with a heart in pursuit of him.
This man Cornelius should put us all to shame. He had no teaching tapes; he didn’t even have a teacher. He was not a Jewish proselyte but simply a man desperate for God. What he had learned had come the hard way—no seminars, no conventions, no how-to-get-it-from-God books. He did not even have the Holy Ghost in him yet, urging him to pray and seek God’s face. Yet he fasted and prayed always.
His prayer life made him a giver of alms. God still had not answered his prayer for his own household, yet he gave generously to all in need. He was not so wrapped up in his own need that it took all his time, attention and money.
Praying men always get God’s attention and the praying man hears God speaking. It’s been that way since the beginning.
You can save your house the same way Cornelius saved his. In a single day, with one glorious miracle, his entire household was saved and filled with the Holy Ghost. In one day his house was transformed from spiritual blindness to marvelous light and life. All because this man set out with great determination to save his house. God help us to get serious about praying for our lost family and friends.