April 30, 2012

Acts 4:8-11 With that, Peter, full of the Holy Spirit, let loose: “Rulers and leaders of the people, if we have been brought to trial today for helping a sick man, put under investigation regarding this healing, I’ll be completely frank with you—we have nothing to hide. By the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, the One you killed on a cross, the One God raised from the dead, by means of his name this man stands before you healthy and whole.

Many times we recognize the presence of God in nature on a beautiful spring day or when we see a wonderful sunset. Sometimes we recognize the presence of God when we see a prayer answered the way we had hoped or something in our lives comes together in a way we would not have expected. In this passage Peter is talking about the miraculous healing of a crippled man and he, and others, certainly experienced the presence of God in that event. But now Peter is “full of the Holy Spirit” when all he is doing is talking. Did he glow? Did his words knock his listeners to the ground? There is nothing in the story to suggest that anything like that happened yet we are assured that God was present in these words just as God was present in the healing of the man.  The question this raises for me is this; is God present in our speech? When we speak to one another, particularly when we speak of what God has done in and around us, is the Holy Spirit part of the conversation? We all know the destructive uses of words, how they hurt and tear down. But what of those words that heal and support and praise and love? Are they one of God’s works of power, a miracle we partake in? Here is the challenge: see if you experience the presence of God in the speech you take in and give out this week. And feel free to reply to this email and let me know!

Don

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