ON THE MESSAGE THIS WEEK: DEALING WITH INTIMIDATION
KEY VERSE: “AFTER THEY PRAYED, THE PLACE WHERE THEY WERE MEETING WAS SHAKEN” (ACTS 4:31)
When we’re following God, we can sometimes face opposition and intimidation. People might come against us because they don’t understand our beliefs. The enemy will try and stop us from moving forward in our faith. If we’re feeling intimidated right now, or just sometimes, we can learn from the disciples.
When they felt threatened by the religious authorities of their day, they did three things:
1) They brought God into the picture. ‘Now, Lord, consider their threats’ (see v.29). We need to talk to God about our situation. God should be the first person we discuss it with, not the last. Prayer is the door through which He enters our situation, so let’s make sure we invite Him in.
2) They also prayed for greater faith. ‘Enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness’ (see v.29). It’s unrealistic to think all our questions will be answered (all the time), and all our fears will disappear. Faith and fear will always be at work in our lives. To be an overcomer, we must learn to starve our fear and feed our faith on God’s Word (have a read of Romans 10:17).
3) They expected God to intervene. They prayed: ‘Stretch out your hand’ (see Acts 4:30). They knew God would hear them and (anticipated) expected Him to answer. Jesus is available any time we call. He always hears us, and will answer - although not always in the way we expect Him to.
After those three things, the Bible tells us that they were filled with the Holy Spirit. ‘After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly’ (see Acts 4:31). Intimidation was gone! They were strengthened and energised by God’s power - and we can be too.
Have a blessed week in Jesus' Name, Amen.
(Extracts from ucb, word for today)
Did you know: There are almost 20 different passages in the Bible where it is mentioned that we are God's people.
Ref: Jeremiah 32:38 / Ezekiel 14:11 / Zechariah 8:8 / 2 Corinthians 6:16 / Hebrews 8:10 / Ezekiel 11:20 / Ezekiel 37:23 / Jeremiah 7:23 / Jeremiah 31:33 / Ezekiel 37:27 / Jeremiah 31:1 / Revelation 21:3 / Exodus 6:7 / Leviticus 26:12 / Jeremiah 11:4 / Jeremiah 30:22 / Ezekiel 36:28.