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Peter and John go to the temple “…at the time of prayer.” We see now in Peter’s life that he has a rhythm of prayer and action, or action and prayer depending on where you find him in the Book of Acts. Peter and John are getting this right. I think of Elizabeth O’Connor’s book “Journey Inward, Journey Outward.” She describes the Christian life in those two Journeys. We “Journey Inward” in prayer, Bible Study, worship, etc. and we “Journey Outward” in action, acts of love, ministry, mission, etc. Peter and John are making these two “Journeys.” We can ask, How well am I doing in these two “Journey’s.”
The lame beggar is expecting some money that afternoon to support him. Peter doesn’t have any money to give and says, “Silver or gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you.” He has something better, the healing power of Christ Jesus at work in and through him. Peter gives what he has. We can only give what we have; but not what we have not experienced, practiced, or are about in our lives. When we live in Christ Jesus as a follower we are equipped to serve others. We will have something we can give, share or add to the life of another; just as Jesus has added to our life. People are looking for meaning, wholeness, true joy, belonging, love, grace, purpose, and at times financial resources…which we already have in Christ Jesus. It’s good to know what we have to give and offer. We can ask each day, “Gracious God, what do I have to offer or give this day?” I think this will help us move beyond ourselves. I know, all too well, that it’s easy to become preoccupied with myself.
And wonder, amazement, and astonishment wash over the people when the lame beggar is healed. They are surprised with joy. Peter wants them to know the good things God has in store for those who follow Jesus. Peter says, “…why does this surprise you? Why do you stare at us as if by our own power or godliness we had made this man walk?” He goes on to speak of Jesus’ power, person, and presence which are available to us all.
Good things, great things, healing things happen when we let the love, grace, and power of Christ live in and through us. How will we live today? Will Jesus live in and through who we are and what we pray? Will Jesus be revealed in what we do, say, think, and long to be this new and fresh day?