The Jail Chair

Steven Laman

READ : Acts 16:22-28

Sometimes my wheelchair feels so confining and so restricting. I feel that way when I see my brother and his friends playing, running, and laughing as they have a wonderful time on the beach or playing sports. At those times, my chair and my disability feel like a filthy, bug-infested, cement jail cell.

It helps to think of the time when Paul and Silas were thrown in jail for preaching the gospel. They could have been bitter. They were doing the Lord’s work, and all they got was jail. But, they didn’t get bitter! They actually praised God despite their bondage in that cell. The two were practicing what Paul wrote to the church in Thessalonica, “Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” (1 Thess. 5:18).

Sometimes it is very hard for me to give thanks in everything. But the Bible commands me to do so, despite the circumstances in my life.

One way that I try to keep the right perspective is to look at all the people who are worse offthan I am. Even though I can’t participate in some activities that I would love to do, I still thank God for what I can do. I know that my disability could be a lot worse, and I just thank God that it isn’t!


Lord, help us to praise You in the jail cells of life. In Jesus’ name. Amen.