All the believers devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, and to fellowship, and to sharing in meals (including the Lord’s Supper ), and to prayer. A deep sense of awe came over them all, and the apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders. And all the believers met together in one place and shared everything they had. They sold their property and possessions and shared the money with those in need. They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord’s Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity — all the while praising God and enjoying the goodwill of all the people. And each day the Lord added to their fellowship those who were being saved. – Acts of the Apostles 2:42-47 NLT
What a church! And I don’t say that because of grand buildings, or leaders with doctorates in theology, or a charismatic leader with controversial messages that appeal to the hearts of the worldly. This was a beautiful community of people sacrificing for one another because they loved God and loved one another. ALL of them devoted themselves, not just a few that claimed a “higher calling” while the others remained satisfied lukewarm and complacent and religious. They actually took to heart the teachings of Christ who wanted us putting the needs of others above our own wants. They actually sought Him and His ways diligently. They actually loved God.
So shouldn’t we ask, Do I love God? Do I love others? Does “my church” love God? Does it love others? Does it resemble this alive and thriving body of believers?
God of wind and fire, whoever would have guessed that ac ragtag band of Jewish followers could be bound together in a movement that would turn the world upside down? Only because of your Holy Spirit, who is fully God. Do that work again in our day; take a wildly diverse people who don’t naturally fit together, and make a peculiar and compelling community, beautiful because of Jesus. In His name we pray, amen. (HC 53)
We need your revival, Lord. A change and a fire so peculiar that the world cannot hide from the bright light of our house upon a hill. Let us be the church publicly and unashamedly in our lives every day, not just privately in our buildings and prayer closets.
What a high calling, to be your church – not to just go to church – not to just be a church member, volunteer, teacher, preacher, evangelist, pastor, or servant – but to take up the call to be a disciple of Christ, a student of the Word of God, a Child of the most high God, a vessel of His Holy Spirit, a royal priesthood, the Body of Christ, the Kingdom of God on earth as it is in Heaven. Help us to do your will today, Lord. Establish our footsteps so that we will walk upright in righteousness, truth, mercy and love. Fill our lives with the fruit of your Holy Spirit, and may our lives bring nourishment to those in need of hope, encouragement, love, and repentance – and bring honor and glory to your name. Amen.