As soon as he realized this, he went to the house of Mary, the mother of John whose other name was Mark, where many had gathered and were praying. When he knocked at the outer gate, a maid named Rhoda came to answer. On recognizing Peter’s voice, she was so overjoyed that, instead of opening the gate, she ran in and announced that Peter was standing at the gate. Acts 12:12-14
Peter realizes that our Lord has orchestrated his freedom from prison so he goes to the believer’s revival. At midnight they are in fervent prayer for Peter. They are praising God for Christ’s actions and miracles. And as Peter knocks on the door. Rhoda is so flustered with joy that she forgets to open the door, runs to tell the believers, and they believe she is mistaken that Peter is at the door.
Very few times have I have witnessed knocking at the door and before opening the door for an ambassador for Christ they’ve run to their friends to exclaim with the announcement, only to have the friends declare them off-balanced. Whether a person or an event change, our prayers are answered by our Lord and we may plainly see His actions in our lives. So then it is time to embrace the visitor at the door to our hearts.
Open the door. Believe that He is powerfully acting in your life all the time and in all circumstances. Yes, at times you will need to have patience and yet if you look very closely with the Holy Spirit’s help you will see Him doing almost unbelievable things for you. Recently a man said to me, “I could write a book, and my friends have encouraged me to do just that, about how our Lord is speaking to me though my life’s events where I could literally see Him changing hearts of others in order to make a way where there was no way for me to go forward for Him.” Alleluia.
Rev. Patricia E. Walker, AlphaChurch.org
the revelation of the Mystery that was kept secret for long ages Romans 16:25
The believers had every confidence in Jesus yet not in themselves. Isn’t that the way faith is? Sadness and grief of His suffering and death almost overwhelmed them except for their united intent that Jesus’ words and memories were so dear to them. Oh, how they loved Him.
Remembering that Jesus said, “I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, so that where I am, there you may be also.” (John 14:3) This biggest Mystery clue of Jesus’ great plan, a secret plan partly revealed, was difficult to put together logically. His cruel death was so visually fresh and their grief so deep.
The believers were forced to wait, watch, and trust. At times, so must we.
We who are strong ought to put up with the failings of the weak. Romans 15:1
Apostle Paul defines the weak as those who are easily swayed in the wrong direction. For instance if you were to drink beer with your poker buddies and then bring your believer friend into the game (the friend, who does not drink alcohol) and your believer friend is influenced by the drinking event– which then influences him to start drinking beer to excess and thus you have not influenced your believer friend for good purpose.
Paul instructs you not please yourself but to honor and influence the weaker person for good. He writes, ‘Each of us must please our neighbor for the good purpose of building up the neighbor,‘ v.2. Build up someone elses’ faith in Jesus and help them to be the best example of Christ in this world that they can be. Be the best example of Christ you can be. Have mercy for others and do not wrongly influence your neighbor. Do not wrongly influence a child also.
Jesus has taught us that we show that we are someone else’s neighbor when we show mercy. (Luke 10:37) Merciful believers help others with genuine loving friendship. Neighborliness. Living mercifully helps weak believers, no matter what age they are, to be strong in spiritual maturity. Your influence is vital.
Let love be genuine, hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good Romans 12:9
Bless those who persecute you and hate evil. How? Stay alert and active in serving Christ. Recognize evil then stay away from avenging yourself (vindication is God’s prerogative not yours) and genuinely love as Christ loves.
Paul’s inspired words from the entire text are summary guidance for you to live transformatively as a loving disciple. For, in order for someone else to be guided to the New Birth there has to be repentance, and for someone else to be led to the moment of repentance they become ashamed of themselves, and shame is the Holy Spirit’s flicker of light on the conscience of the unbeliever.
Disciples turn others to Christ with consistently genuine love.
For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved. Romans 10:5
Everyone, everyone, everyone! A powerful word for the powerfilled event of salvation in Christ. Paul describes each person’s salvation event as ‘justified’ and ‘made righteous’ in Christ. And when one humbles themselves before Jesus and is truly sorry for their selfish living and thinking then the Christ event of salvation happens, because of ‘everyone.’
All, anyone, and everyone may call of the name of Jesus Christ and receive it– salvation. You know He has given it to you because it is a glorious heart-warming moment of transformation when you are adopted by Christ to be His own beloved dear one. Then He never leaves you, never gives up on you, pursues you when you stray, helps you with God’s will, and you are His into eternity.
You have died to the law through the body of Christ, so that you may belong… to Him who has been raised from the dead in order that we may bear fruit for God. Romans 7:4
You cannot ever divorce from your covenant commitment to Christ. Beneficial blessings out of your union with Him are that you shall become more like Him. He was the only perfect human ever to live and His Presence within you by the Holy Spirit moves you into His perfection, not automatically, for you shall keep your focus on Him at all times and that takes practice, patience, and forgiveness.
Marriage takes work. How you work on your marriage is crucial– daily immersion in the New Testament and forgiveness of others and self.
You can measure your progress at the end of each day through this checklist: love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. (Galatians 5:22-23)
Suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope,, and hope does not disappoint us because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us. Romans 5:4-5
Peace. Zero stress. Secure. No threats can break through God’s shield on your soul. As a Christian you are not immune to life’s suffering so by putting faith into action your character is built up so that your relationship with Jesus is unmovable.
Endure in your belief. Nothing can make you doubt what you believe as you hear the Word of God above the noise of this world, including any suffering. Hope that Jesus will get you through, out, better.
You have met the Way, the Truth, the Life in Jesus Christ. Believe that He walked on the water and the Holy Spirit lifts you to tread upon troubles. Believe that He calmed the sea as the Holy Spirit claims your salty soul. Believe that He fed the 5000 and the Holy Spirit sustains you with heavenly food and drink. He is your compassionate Christ Resurrected.