Putting God's Word into Practice…

Acts 4 – The Powerful Name

on June 24, 2012

I’m reading through the Psalms this month along with my journey through the New Testament.  Yesterday I read Psalm 69-71.  In Psalm 69 I was convicted afresh of my waning zeal for God’s house and my desire to be reproached, to weep and fast.  I begged Him for more sacrificial passion in my spiritual life. As I continued through 70 and 71, my heart was drawn to how often the mouth was mentioned in conjunction with proclaiming the praise, joy, glory and greatness of God, along with declaring His righteous acts and mighty deeds.  Upon reflection, I realized what my mouth was full of, and how I want it to be full of the aforementioned language.  Then I moved on to Acts 4 and felt more conviction.  

Peter and John were arrested for healing in and attesting to the powerful name of Jesus Christ.  There ministry was effective and bold.  They spoke of salvation through NO OTHER NAME!  That is absolute truth, yet seldom boldly proclaimed.   They were uneducated, common men, yet were recognized for their boldness and set apart as men who had spent time with JESUS.  I spend a lot of time reading the Word and thinking on it, but I’m not sure that people look at me and think,”There’s a common girl who behaves and speak in an uncommon way because she spends time with Jesus.”  That is how I long to be recognized, though.  Peter and John were bold in hostile situations.  How can that be?  The answer is in verse 8–they were filled with the Holy Spirit.  ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE WHEN THE HOLY SPIRIT IS IN TOTAL CONTROL!  However, so often, I want to be in control…doing and saying what I deem acceptable and not listening to what the Holy Spirit wants.  That is why my words lack power and boldness.

Then moving on to the next section, I was terribly convicted about my prayer life.  I’ve never prayed with such devotion and fervency that God shook my house!  Peter and John went to their friends upon their release, and their first response was prayer, calling out to a “Sovereign Lord, who Created ALL things.”  They praise Him, petitioned Him and asked for power through the name of the Holy Servant, Jesus.  Everything they asked in faith by Jesus’ name was answered just like He promised before His ascension.  He gave them more of the Holy Spirit which equaled more boldness.  That is a request He will grant all day long!

Because of this recognized need for the Holy Spirit, their dependence on Him for their work and worship, the people were unified.  No one was trying to do their own thing, push their own agenda, operating in their own strength, “and great grace was upon them all.”  Isn’t that how we should long to see the body of Christ living–unified in power and boldness under grace?  It takes surrender, prayer, and more of the Holy Spirit.

That is what I’m asking for today–for me, my husband, my sons and our church.


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