Acts 3: 1–10 ‘So the man gave them his attention, expecting to get something from them. Then Peter said, “Silver or gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk.”’ (vv5–6)
An urban legend attributed to Francis of Assisi (and others) describes how, on entering the Pope’s presence, before whom a large sum of money was spread out, he observed, ‘You see, the Church no longer can say, “Silver and gold have I none.”’ ‘True, holy father,’ Francis responded, ‘but neither can it any longer say to the lame, “Rise up and walk”’. The point is, we can quickly lose sight of the God-life when engaged in life’s minutiae. The issue is neither money nor physical healing, rather it’s the essential ingredient of discipleship –the focus of our human heart. Peter and John are devoted to God, their only master, and when confronted by a challenge, they respond with the good news and inform the beggar that wealth is not his issue, it’s his perception of himself and his world.
Jesus’ teaching was often accompanied by a sign, and this man recovered his mobility, the feebleness in his legs replaced with active muscle tone. He rose to walk both physically and spiritually and experienced true conversion, a change of mind, no longer seeing himself as he, and others, had day after day. No one could now ignore him for he had a testimony to the love of God, and a mission to make God known. This beggar illustrates that prayer and mission are the principle gifts we bring through our lives to the many struggling in our world. All we have is Jesus, but then again, despite its deliberate sophistication, all the world needs is Jesus.
SCRIPTURE TO CONSIDER: Ps. 16; Matt. 6:19–27; Mark 5; Luke 7:1–10.
AN ACTION TO TAKE: As we conclude our reflections on mission, how will you prioritise your life going forward? All change takes time, and all effective change will lead us to Jesus.
A PRAYER TO MAKE: ‘Lord, help me to keep You as my focus every day and grow in the confidence that all I need is Jesus, and Jesus is the greatest gift I bring to the world. Amen.’