“There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of what was called the Italian Regiment, a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, who gave alms generously to the people, and prayed to God always” (Acts 10:1-2 NKJV).
The life of Cornelius proves that God seeks full-hearted devotion, obedience and ceaseless prayer. Consider how this man of God saved his house and the miracles his devotion brought about.
Cornelius was so determined to lead his household into God’s fullness that he neglected to eat in favor of seeking 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 to earn a blessing from heaven. However, hunger after God takes the edge off the desire for food for a man with a heart in pursuit of him.
Cornelius should put us all to shame. He had no sermons or online instruction. 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 with no seminars, no conventions, no how-to-get-it-from-God books. Even though he hadn’t yet received the Holy Ghost urging him to pray and seek God’s face, he fasted and prayed continually.
His prayer life made him a giver of alms. At that point, God had not answered his prayer for his household, yet he gave generously to those in need. He was not so wrapped up in his own need that it took all his time, attention and money.
Praying men and women always get God’s attention, and the praying person hears the voice of God. 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 of this happened because one man set out with great determination to save his house. May God help us get serious too about praying for our lost families and friends.