Jun 1, 2017

Posted by in Awesomeness, Encouragement, Fruit For Thought, G.I.G., Wisdom | 0 Comments

Ordinary

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As a kid, I remember there was a song that came on the radio, and its chorus went like this: “I’m just a nobody trying to tell everybody about Somebody who can change anybody.” Then, when I was in high school, I bought Mary Mary’s sophmore album and played it to death! One of the tracks on the CD is entitled, “Ordinary People.” Not to be confused with the John Legend song. This one came out before his and it’s way better (yes, I’m bias lol)! Any who, the chorus to the Mary Mary song says, “I’m just ordinary people who found extraordinary love.” I didn’t really get the message both songs were trying to convey until I got back into the book of Acts recently.

 

Let me set the stage: So, Peter and John (i.e. Jesus’ homies aka Apostles) were headed to the Temple when they came across this dude who had been disabled all his life. He couldn’t walk. The guy asked Jesus’ boys to hook him up with some money. Then, Peter and John were like “Look at us?! Do we look like we got money?! But, what we do have is waaaay better! In the name of Jesus, get up and walk (so you can make your own money).” Okay, okay, they didn’t say that last part about him making his own money, but I’m sure it was an implied benefit of his healing. The dude was probably like “Yay! Now, I can work!”

 

After the miracle, Peter and John gave all credit and honor to the name of Jesus, because that’s how it happened. They had no special knowledge, skills, or power. They were just regular, ordinary people who had faith in the name of Jesus. Their haters, who arrested them after the miracle, noticed this too. Check out Acts 4:13:

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.

 

Let’s chew on that a little bit. Peter and John, two men that God used to start the early church, were basically unqualified, regular guys. There wasn’t anything spectacular about them that made them useful to the Kingdom. If anything, they put all their faith in what God gave them: the Holy Spirit and the name of Jesus. They actually considered the name of Jesus as something valuable that sustains life; similar to, but much greater than, silver and gold. It was evident, because when they were asked for currency, they responded with the name of Jesus.

 

So, how does this apply to me, to you, to us?

 

1) It’s Okay to be Ordinary – I’m not sure if you noticed, but God LOVES using ordinary people. Ordinary is the best canvas for God’s extraordinary to be seen. Although we get discouraged when we feel unqualified, when we’re reminded of our limitations daily, and when we feel like a failure, God sees us as useful. Many times, it takes us discovering our limitations before God can step in and empower us to exceed our limitations. That means understanding that you’re ordinary and then going to God to make you a vessel for His extraordinary…Don’t rule yourself out because of your limitations. Don’t compare yourself to others who “you think” are more qualified. God’s standard for being qualified is totally different from our standard.

 

2). Spend Time with Jesus – When the members of the council looked at Peter and John, they noticed two things: #1: they were oridinary; and #2: they had been with Jesus. I’m pretty sure #2 was evident to them because they physically saw Peter and John with Jesus in the past. Today, spending time with Jesus looks a little different. We spend time with Him through reading His word and talking to Him (prayer), but people will still be able to recognize when you’ve been with Jesus. The Bible tells us that the world will know that we’re His disciples by the way we love each other (John 13:35). When you spend time with God, it changes the way you interact with people. I’m telling you! People will be able to tell the difference. And, you know what’s so interesting? We need to spend time with God to grow our faith, but we also need to grow in love and to walk in it because faith works by love (Galatians 5:6). Love is the battery that gives our faith the power to work.

 

3) Faith in the Name – As ordinary people, we’ve got to have faith in the name of Jesus. There’s so much power in that Name. After the lame guy was healed, this is what “ordinary” Peter said in Acts 3:16, “Through faith in the name of Jesus, this man was healed – and you know how crippled he was before. Faith in Jesus’ name has healed him before your very eyes.” This lets me know that in order for God’s power to flow through our lives we’ve got to have faith in the name, power, and strength of Jesus. We can’t focus on our name and our limitations. We’ve got to focus on His. That is where the power comes from.

 

Quick Side Note: In order to have faith in the name of Jesus, you’ve got to keep His name holy. When we take His name in vain and use it in common speech day to day, it becomes generic to us. As a result, when we use it in prayer, our faith in that name is diminished because we’ve made it common in our minds and lives. #selah

 

…There is such beauty in being ordinary. It’s a confession to the world that our God is great and He is the source of everything good that flows through us: “We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves.” -2 Corinthians 4:7  **G.I.G.**

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