“And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common. And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.” –Acts 2:42-47
In Acts we find the beginning of the Christian Church. Jesus had left, but the Holy Spirit had come. The disciples began preaching, and the church was born in the middle of chaos and continued persecution.
Although we do not face the same persecution as the early church, we do share some of the same obstacles and can learn how to get through these times from them. Here are four things we need to pursue like the early Christian Church.
“And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.”
It is easy to fall out of good habits, especially when our schedules and routines have all taken a turn. But now, more than ever, we need to lean into God’s word. The Bible will strengthen our resolve, offer comfort to our souls, put rest to our anxiety, and fill us up with Hope. Take this opportunity to form new habits, be intentional like the early disciples to devote ourselves to God’s word, prayer, and remembering Christ’s sacrifice for us.
“And all who believed were together and had all things in common……And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes…”
Although we are unable to meet face to face, we have several avenues to still connect and fellowship. There is great power in community, that’s why the devil is taking it away from us. He wants to isolate us, to control our narrative, to keep us away from hope.
We will not let our present circumstances keep us from meeting. Join our service online, attend our online classes, keep up to date on our blog. Text a neighbor, call a friend, send a letter. Skype, Facetime, or Marco Polo. Whatever means you have, use it. Be extra intentional to foster community, to reach out for help, and to offer friendship to others.
“And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need.”
Our culture prizes independence. It’s not often one asks for help, or someone’s needs are so clear. We have an abundance of opportunities to serve, give, and love. Let’s pray to see and seize these opportunities! Give to the local church, as they act as the hands and feet of Jesus in our community. Offer to deliver groceries for those at risk. Look out for those unable to receive a paycheck during these times. Get creative and be generous.
Gratitude and Praise
“…they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people.”
Through all of this, there is still so much to be grateful for. Let us not overlook all the blessings in our lives. God thank you that I still have food and toilet paper. Thank you for all the healthcare workers who are diligently seeking answers, and graciously serving our community. Thank you for nice weather, blue skies, and the songs of birds outside my window. Thank you for giving me another day. From the grass beneath our feet to the skies above, it all comes from God and is a gift masterfully woven for us.
Bonus: Let’s Get Contagious
We want to be markedly different than the world. Instead of hoarding, let’s give. Instead of living in fear, live in hope. Instead of turning away, turn towards your neighbors. Instead of complaints and criticism, practice gratitude and rejoice. If we follow the example of the early church, we will be contagious. Not with Corona, but with the love and hope of Christ. And that’s what the world REALLY needs right now.
“And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.”