Archive for October 5th, 2007

Times of Refreshing

Friday, October 5th, 2007

Today’s scripture: Acts 3:11-26 (NRSV) (The Message)

As you read, consider: What might God be saying to me? Summarize your thoughts in a sentence or two.

My thoughts (Theresa Benson):

Have you ever been in the position of the beggar in today’s reading? I certainly have.

During the summer of 2006, I was reeling from over a year and a half of emotional and spiritual pain. The man I’d been dating for quite a while unpredictably ended our relationship, I didn’t get a promotion I fully expected to get, I didn’t get along with the guy who got “my” promotion and it was affecting both my performance and pay at work, my mom’s health was failing dramatically, I moved across the country from a West coast “blue state” to Indiana to take a position that felt (to my puffed up ego, anyway) somehow “less than” what I was capable of, and two months after I moved here my Mom passed away.

Sitting in my living room one Saturday afternoon, I was begging God for any kind of help, having for months used food, alcohol, excess and isolation and finding little relief.

I told God how much I missed a relationship with Him, how I missed feeling connected to something bigger than myself, and how much I wished for a sign of some kind to help me find my way back. And when I got back from walking my dog later that day, on my doorknob was literally a sign, inviting me to visit Jesus MCC.

Looking back a year and a half later, I find myself now in the position of the amazed crowd, seeing the beggar-woman from my living room now healed. Was it any one person who healed me? No, just as Peter says in today’s reading, it’s the Spirit of God working through the people I’ve come to call my friends, and my belief that I could find healing, that allowed it to happen.

Also like the crowd, I had sent Jesus away by rejecting His healing power for the year and a half I was suffering. Each time I used food, rage, isolation or sex as a way to find oblivion, I felt myself die a little more inside — and yet I kept choosing these murderers over the One I really should have been asking for.

The beauty of it is, though, that God’s power is so much greater than my self-imposed separation. All I needed to do was what Peter suggests in today’s reading, and turn back to God.

Thought for the day: Thank you God for sending healing through others who demonstrate Your love to us! May I have the opportunity today to show Your love to someone who needs it.

We encourage you to include a time of prayer with this reading. If you need a place to get started, consider the guidelines on the How to Pray page.

"Be still, and know that I am God." Psalm 46:10
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