April 14, 2015

Spending Time With Jesus

Acts 4:8-22

When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus.

—  Acts 4:13

Some years ago I heard someone comment that schools that train men and women for ministry should be attracting "the best and the brightest." Thankfully, the Lord also uses some of us who don't fit that description! In fact, according to the apostle Paul, "Not many [who were called] . . . were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth" (1 Corinthians 1:26).

Jesus' disciples were ordinary people without an advanced education. But they had been taught by the Lord Jesus himself and were empowered by the Holy Spirit.

The Lord used these ordinary people to spread the good news about the risen Savior. And because of that they stood out. Those who questioned them "were astonished and . . . took note that these men had been with Jesus." That's the key: they had been in Jesus' presence.

Sometimes we may wonder, "Am I good enough to talk about the Lord? Do I know enough? Will others accept what I have to say?" The answer: Of course, if only we spend time with Jesus by listening to him and walking with him. If we do, it will become clear to the people around us, and they will recognize that we have been with Jesus. Are you willing to give it a try?

Lord our God, draw us into your presence, and help us to spend time with you so that others will see through our lives that we have been with Jesus. Amen.

About the author — Arthur J. Schoonveld

Rev. Art Schoonveld is a retired minister in the Christian Reformed Church. Before retiring in 2001, he served churches in California, Illinois, and Michigan. Since his retirement he has worked part-time for the denomination and has served as an interim pastor. Art and his wife, Anita, have four children and nine grandchildren.

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