Focal Passage: Acts 5:25-35, 38-42
I remember practicing for the little league all-star game when I was about 12 years old. Someone hit a hard ground ball to me in left field, and as I prepared to scoop it up, it hopped and I stopped it with my nose.
I immediately fell over, grabbing my nose in tears. All the players close to me gathered around to observe my wounded face.
To my surprise, it wasn’t broken or bloody. Even if it had been, it was part of the calculated risk of playing baseball.
In Acts 5 the apostles were arrested for preaching Jesus and performing miracles. That night the angel of the Lord opened the prison gates and led them out so they could go back to preaching the gospel.
The officers who went to escort the apostles to court found the prison gates locked and the guards unaware of their missing prisoners.
As the captain of the temple guard and the chief priests received this report, someone arrived to tell them that the apostles were in the temple teaching the people.
After the temple guard brought them back to stand before the Council, the high priest reminded them that they had been given strict orders not to teach in Jesus’ name.
Peter and the apostles boldly replied, “We must obey God rather than men” (5:29). They then preached the gospel to a captive audience of the highest ranking Jews of their day.
How much would it take for you to quit serving Jesus?
I don’t mean denying the faith.
How much pain would it take for the wounds of discipleship to make you a spectator talking about the “good ole days?”
One hit to the nose brought our baseball practice to a halt so everyone could look at me.
Do we spend more time consoling believers over the ordinary wounds of discipleship, or calling fellow believers to stand up, brush off the dirt and praise God for the privilege of suffering for Christ?