Commentary on the Gospel of
The story of Peter in chains is an exciting one—the kind I liked to read in a children's’ illustrated Bible* when I was a kid—good pictures, excitement, angels appearing, Peter sneaking away—an Indiana Jones kind of story. It’s got an evil monarch, a good guy, a magical occurrence, and an escape.
I think there are two lessons here: First, God is there for us, to lead us out of whatever captivity we’re in (or have made for ourselves). Second: Many times when we wish for escape--from bills, irksome people, events not to our liking, stress, you name it--it’s not always as easy as it seems to happen to Peter; angels don’t seem to magically appear, at least not the way it seems in the reading. But we do have angels among us, the everyday kind of angels. They are the nice guy who lets us go ahead at the gas station, the spouse who gives us an unexpected hug, the polite teenager at the grocery store, the administrative assistant who goes the extra mile, the student who tells you that you made a difference, or even the cat or dog who climbs into our lap on a tough day. The are the angels that help us escape from the little captivities we find ourselves in and show us the every-moment goodness of the life we’re given. We need to tune in to these angels, and accept them for the gifts they are.
(*My aunt and uncle gave me “The Bible in Pictures” when I was little, and I loved the pictures—especially Daniel in the lions’ den, David and Goliath, and the Jesus conversing with the rabbis.)