Expectations. We all have them. Sometimes, our expectations end up leaving us disappointed. But for one lame man who encountered Peter and John at the temple, his expectations far exceeded anything He could have imagined.
Expectations. We all have them, but for one lame man who encountered Peter and John, his expectations far exceeded anything He could have imagined. He asked for alms but encountered the power of God working through Peter.
— click to tweet
In Acts, chapter 3 we find Peter and John going to the temple at the hour of prayer. As they were entering they find a man that was born lame. He had never walked a day in his life. Because of being lame, he was unable to work so to support himself, he would sit outside the temple begging for alms (money). He was totally depended on the kindness of others just to live day to day. There was no governmental assistance programs to help him so he had to swallow his pride and beg and hope someone would have pity on him and drop him a coin or two. So as Peter and John approached him, he asked them to give him so money. The Bible tells us that Peter fastened his eyes on the lame man and said to him, “Look on us.” The man looks, expecting them to give him a coin – or maybe each them would give him a coin. Can you imagine him looking at them, hope in his eyes, with his basket stretched out for them to drop a coin in to? The encounter started out positive, but Peter’s next words probably were very disappointing. Peter said, “Silver and gold have I none.” Can you imagine the thoughts going through the lame man’s mind? Thoughts like, “Then why did you want me to look at you?” or “Just another person making fun of me. He was never going to help me anyway.” But then Peter continued, “but such as I have give I thee.” Perhaps now the lame man is thinking that Peter was going to give him some food or an extra coat to keep him warm. Little did he know that Peter’s next words would change his entire life. Peter said, “In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk.” Peter takes him by his hand and pulls him up. The Bible tells us that instantly the man’s feet and ankle bones received strength – not just to stand on, but a man who had never taken a step in his life went walking and leaping, and praising God! He didn’t praise Peter and John. He recognized the healing came from God and he rightly gave God the praise.
When the lame man encountered Peter, his feet and ankle bones immediately received strength. He came to the temple lame and had never walked in his life – but left the temple walking and leaping and praising God. – click to tweet
Sometimes, we pray and ask God to heal someone or to give us something and we become disappointed when those prayer seem to go unanswered. We don’t know if the lame man ever prayer for God to heal him. Or maybe he’d prayed so many times that he’d given up on asking. However, even when it feels that God is not at work, we can trust that He is working all things out for our good (Romans 8:28). This lame man’s story would become part of the story of the early church growing and thriving and spreading. God choose for this man to encounter Peter and John on this day, in that moment and his story would be a testimony for God had done for him. Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For I know the plans I have for you, plans for your welfare, not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” The man came to the temple with the expectations of receiving enough coins just to feed himself but encountered the power of God working through Peter and he went home walking and leaping and praising God. We can trust God that even if he doesn’t give us what we are asking for, that He has something so much better in mind or that while we think something we are asking for is what we really need, God sees something we don’t and what we are asking for is not for our good – so He doesn’t give it to us. Even when things come our way that we don’t understand, we can trust that God will only do what is for our best interests.
What expectations do you have today? Have they left you feeling let down and disappointed? Surrender them to God and trust Him for His plans for you – whatever they are and when you encounter the power of God at work, your greatest expectations will be nowhere near anything you can imagine.
What expectations do you have today? Surrender them to God and trust His plans for you – whatever they are – and when you encounter the power of God at work, your greatest expectations will be nowhere near anything you can imagine. — click to tweet
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Julia is CEO of Wellspring Christian Ministries, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping people and couples develop a passionate relationship with God. A public speaker, conference trainer, event planner, and blog writer, Julia is a two-time graduate from Grand Canyon University with a bachelor in Psychology and a masters in Professional Counseling. Saved as a child and raised in church and in a Christian home and private Christian School as a Pastor’s kid, Julia has taught Sunday school, led music, played the piano, served as Children’s Director, and engaged her gifts in many other areas of church life. Previously employed with the Florida Baptist Convention, Julia organized events and led conferences for church ministry assistants.
Julia enjoys sharing her journey as a growing Christian with others looking for a deeper connection with God. Through Bible study and her own life experiences, God has given Julia a passion to help couples understand God’s design for marriage while they learn to place God first in their marriage, cultivate meaningful relationships, build intimacy, and address the tougher issues that come in every marriage so that they can experience a marriage that honors and glorifies God. Julia also loves mentoring, teaching, and working with women to help them learn to live as Godly women.
With her history and experience growing up in both small and large churches, Julia enjoys bringing top level quality events to churches of all sizes. Her father largely pastored small churches and therefore she understands that these vital parts of the believing community need to be good stewards of the resources God provides them with. This knowledge inspires her passion for being available with a fresh perspective for those who want to provide their congregations with meaningful spiritual growth opportunities.