I love reading the book of Acts. It is really an action packed book describing the outpouring of the Holy Spirit and the growth of the Christian church through changed lives. In the book of Acts we find some incredible stories of genuine, real, live followers of Jesus Christ.
These were people who knew what it was to daily walk and talk with God – people who, because of their commitment to Jesus and godly lifestyles, had in effect earned the right to preach the gospel because there was living evidence in their lives. And people recognized that they had been with Jesus.
In acts 4:13 we read: “The members of the council were amazed when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, for they could see that they were ordinary men with no special training in the Scriptures. They also recognized them as men who had been with Jesus”.
This statement was actually meant as a compliment. The interesting thing is that these words were not even spoken by Christians. It was made by the members of the council who had been observing these Christ-followers as they went about their daily lives living out the Christian faith in the community.
As I said before I am always strengthened when reading the book of Acts because it is a constant reminder to me that God can use ordinary people – people like you and me to make a difference in the world. I mention this because we have a tendency to place these super leaders and apostles on pedestals. We see them as super talented, super gifted, super heroes.
What we fail to see is that the events of the book of Acts (of which you and I are writing the final chapters with our lives) took place over a 30-year period. If you look closely you will realize that it is not a book primarily about miracles. Not every person in the book of Acts had visions from God. Not every day was filled with the supernatural. The first-century believers were ordinary people very much like you and me, living in a very secular society with a variety of Gods to choose from. They just went about their business from day to day honoring God with their testimony and lives.
How is it with us? As Christians living in the world are people able to tell that we have been with Jesus? Is there evidence in the way we live and the values we hold to confirm it? The truth is it doesn't matter how many Bibles you own or how often you attend church if there is not a significant change of character.
This I believe is what we see in the lives of the first-century Christians which significantly impacted the world they were living in. They walked with God and it showed in all areas of their daily lives. Are you willing to do the same? Are you willing to WALK the TALK and allow the Holy Spirit to use you to significantly impact the world, one life at a time? Do people recognize you as someone who has been with Jesus?