Tag Archives: using what you have

Playing with the Cards You’re Given

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Think about just about any card game out there and what it takes to win. Sure, part of your success in the game relies on your strategy and decisions for game play, but most of your success or failure in the game centers around the cards that you are dealt at the beginning of the game. We’ve all had those great hands that make winning a breeze and have probably been accused of cheating by the people playing with us. We’ve also had those hands that are the worst possible one we could have at that moment and have been tempted to quit before we even start. Think of the sweetness of a win that comes from what started out as a horrible hand. Sometimes we appreciate those wins more because it was hard to get there.

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Thoughts on Acts 3

This devotion comes from Acts 3 (quotations are from the NIV)

In Acts 3 we see that Peter and John were still going to the temple for prayer. They did not disconnect from their own people, but were still trying to reach them. Beggers would have been a common sight outside the temple, counting on the giving of devout Jews to be able to survive. The begger in Acts 3 does what we would expect: asks for money. Though Peter and John did not have money to give this man, they did not just go on their way ignoring him. Instead, Peter stopped and said (in verse 6), “Silver or Gold I do not have, but what I have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk.” The man was healed by the power of Christ. Peter used the authority of Jesus- in His name- to ask in faith for healing for this man.

The man, who had been crippled since birth, received many wonderful blessings that day. Not only was he able to walk, but because he was healed he was able to enter the temple courts for the first time. He also heard Peter preach about Jesus.

The crowd was amazed by this healing. Peter was sure to deflect their amazement and wonder to the one to whom it was due: the Lord Jesus. It was God who healed this man and by His power, not anything Peter or John did, but by “Jesus’ name and the faith that comes through him (3:6b)”. The situation became an opportunity to glorify Christ and to share the Gospel with all who were there.

Our service should not only use what we have to give, but be done through God’s power, by faith in Jesus Christ and His power to save. Even if we have “nothing” to give, like Peter and John with the crippled man in Acts 3, we who are part of God’s family have Jesus and the Gospel that we can share. We can use our service as a way to share the Gospel with others—to share the love of God and hope we have as God’s children, forgiven of our sins. The gift of Jesus and through Him the forgiveness of sin is the greatest gift ever, but many times people will be more ready to listen if we serve them in other ways as well.

May we all be challenged to give what we have and use what we have to share the Gospel with those we serve.

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