Today's devotion picks up in the Book of Acts with Peter going throughout the region to visit, encourage, and build up the church and its people. There had been so much persecution that it was driving people out of Jerusalem and into the surrounding lands. Now was a time a peace and growth. The church was expanding quickly and today's story shows how the Holy Spirit was making that happen through the stories of others. Read Acts 9:31-43
Two things stick out to me about this passage:
1. Peter calls the followers of Christ, "Saints". Acts 9:32 says he "went to visit the saints in Lydda." I love this. I believe, for those of us who follow Christ today, we can take some encouragement from this knowing that our Father in Heaven recognizes us as saints.
2. The two changed lives in the passage, the 8-year paralytic who got up and walked and the lady who came back to life, showed the power of the Holy Spirit at work. That same Holy Spirit is at work in the lives of Christians today. Their stories prompted others to look to Christ, just like our stories can. Our stories show that miracles still happen.
You and I are needed right where we are. God chooses normal, unqualified, everyday sinners like you and me to show and tell others about Jesus. He calls us to be difference makers for the Kingdom, to be bold when we're not confident, when we fumble over our words, or if we fear persecution from others. The Holy Spirit will help us use our own story to point people to Christ while our words become His. May we be evidence of a changed life wherever we are.