Just recently I've been reading Acts 3 and it occurred to me that its a wonderful picture of the church and shows how we should be together?
There are so many things that we can take from this scripture, but the one I want to focus on is Peter’s and John’s actions towards the lame man.
Now Peter and John were going up to the temple at the hour of prayer, the ninth hour. And a man lame from birth was being carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple that is called the Beautiful Gate to ask alms of those entering the temple. Seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple, he asked to receive alms. And Peter directed his gaze at him, as did John, and said, “Look at us.” And he fixed his attention on them, expecting to receive something from them. But Peter said, “I have no silver and gold, but what I do have I give to you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk!” And he took him by the right hand and raised him up, and immediately his feet and ankles were made strong. And leaping up he stood and began to walk, and entered the temple with them, walking and leaping and praising God. And all the people saw him walking and praising God, and recognised him as the one who sat at the Beautiful Gate of the temple, asking for alms. And they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him.
While he clung to Peter and John, all the people, utterly astounded, ran together to them in the portico called Solomon's.
(Acts 3:1-11 ESV)
Most people think of the miracle, but its not just about the miracle, its about the messengers.
We start in verse 2 with the lame man being carried, by who we are not told, but we can presume he wouldn't have been able to get to the beautiful gate without the help from his friends or family each day.
In verse 5 the lame man fixes his attention on to Peter and John, expecting to receive something from them. We need to be more like this fixing our eyes onto God expecting that He can do more than we can ask, think or image.
In verse 7 Peter took him by the right hand and raised him up and he was healed, but as we go further through this passage we see that the lame man was clinging to both Peter and John as they ran into the Portico.
Well I think if this was me I would be clinging onto someone, he had never done this before, just like a child taking its first steps they must have seemed very strange to the man to be running seconds after he had learned to walk.
The purpose of the church in community with each other is to help people up, to encourage, to equip, to teach to train amongst other things.
My challenge in my own walk is to be more like Peter and John to see people restored (To be restored means to become better than you where before)
The messengers where key to this hole process, without the messenger i.e. you and me the message has no where to go and can never touch anyone’s live’s.
The messengers were not there just for the miracle or the moment, but stayed with him, and were support for him while he clung to them, Acts 3:11.
People need longevity with relationships, they need to know that you will be there for them whether they are going through the valley or enjoying the successes of the mountaintop, because love is more about what you do rather than what you say?
Come on church, lets be more like Peter and John, lets care enough to help people and care enough to keep caring and walking it out together, you never know one day the lame man could be you!
So in 2016 don't talk about change, be the change!