Monday, August 16, 2010

...but what I do have I give you

Acts 3:6 Then Peter said, "Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you:  In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk."
Peter and John are on their way into the temple for daily prayers around 3 in the afternoon.  They see a lame man lying outside the gate.  Almost certainly they had seen him numerous times before because he was carried to that gate daily to beg for money.  The lame man didn't set his goals high enough to ask for healing...he just wanted money...Healing must have seemed out of the realm of possibility.  When they carried him to the gate it was like taking him to the office for his day's work.  He may have been supporting others and he was positioned to confront people when they were vulnerable...on their way to the temple to face God.  It was almost like a business transaction:  "If you give me money your good deed will help your place with the Almighty as you go to prayer."  But we are now in the days of the Holy Spirit and Peter and John are involved with another kind of business: bringing the truth of the living God and of Jesus Christ to others.  Peter doesn't ask the lame man if he wants to be healed...he doesn't ask if he has heard of Jesus...he doesn't wait for the reponse of faith...Peter gives something that he has to someone with an obvious need.  This sets off quite a commotion, as the healed man is well known and Peter is given a platform to present the truth of Jesus to a wider audience.  It occurs to me that, like Peter, there is something that we have that we can give to others.  The faith and new life that lives within and has transformed us, personally, gives us a message for others.  We don't have to wait for the perfect opportunity before we freely share our faith.  We need to share our faith wisely that others might be given an opportunity to be set perfectly free.
Rob Smith

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