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Are You Overlooking the Obvious?
Acts 3:4-9 (NLT)
4 Peter and John looked at him intently, and Peter said, “Look at us!” 5 The lame man looked at them eagerly, expecting some money. 6 But Peter said, “I don’t have any silver or gold for you. But I’ll give you what I have. In the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene, get up and walk!” 7 Then Peter took the lame man by the right hand and helped him up. And as he did, the man’s feet and ankles were instantly healed and strengthened. 8 He jumped up, stood on his feet, and began to walk! Then, walking, leaping, and praising God, he went into the Temple with them.9 All the people saw him walking and heard him praising God.
Do we allow life’s circumstances to prevent us from experiencing the glory of God in our lives? The lame man at the gate called Beautiful in the above passage was born lame and so daily he would be placed at the temple gate where he begged for money. He received what he was begging for, believing (given his condition) that money was the most that he could hope for, believe for, or expect.
Along come Peter and John, full of the Holy Ghost and full of power. They had the ability to see beyond what the lame man was begging for and to see him healed. Peter and John could have given him money; but the next day, he would have been right back in the same place still begging. They chose to give the lame man life; Jesus, a miracle!
When Peter and John told the man to look at them, expectancy immediately arose in the man’s heart. How cool is it to be expecting one thing and God gives you more than you ever thought, dreamed, or imagined was possible? His expectancy, Peter and John’s faith, the Holy Spirit, and the power of God working in them raised the lame man up and out of that condition that had crippled him from birth!
When Peter took the man by the right hand and lifted him up, immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength. He jumped up, stood, and began walking, leaping, and praising God! He did not forget the most important thing – to praise God! Peter and John did not take credit for this miracle; but gave God the glory for raising this man and giving him life.
Are we physically, mentally, or spiritually crippled?
This man had been in his situation because of a condition that he was born with. Even in his condition, he was still placed at the temple gate seeking money daily. He could have remained home and chosen to have a daily pity party because (we can conclude from the text that) he was physically. mentally, AND spiritually crippled. Doubt and unbelief were constant companions of this man as he lay begging at the gate daily. The man's mind was not renewed daily, but was focused on what he considered to be his greatest need. What have we allowed to cripple us physically, mentally, and spiritually such that we have become slothful and complacent; seeking the temporal rather than the eternal? Reflect on the following series of questions.
·Why am I still in the condition that I’m in and what am I doing daily to change or better my circumstances? What are my thoughts concerning my situation? Do my thoughts align with the Word of God?
·How am I demonstrating my expectancy? Am I expecting God’s best?
·What is it that I, perhaps, am overlooking? What is it that I really need? Do I believe that God is able to provide it?
·Am I settling out of complacency by choosing not to even ask or hope for a miracle?
Remember, we have an Abba, Father who is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask, or think, according to the power that worketh in us. (Ephesians 3:20) We don’t have to stay in our spiritually decrepit conditions; God is able to deliver and set us free beyond our wildest expectations!