Do you have a dream inside your heart that you’d want to see God do in your lifetime? My dream is that God would launch a movement around America so that Christians would actually live like Christians. God, by the power of the Holy Spirit, puts inside each one of us dreams, desires and opportunities. And there isn’t some great “hero” coming to fulfill these dreams either. God wants to use us, ordinary people, to fulfill these dreams.
This is why God chose the disciples. None of them were educated or had money, or even political power. Yet God equipped them to do extraordinary things. Why? So that the world would know that it was God who did those things.
God sent the Holy Spirit to live inside the disciples, and they began to change the world. And He still does this today with every true Christ-follower. We all have the potential to influence and change our world around us.
So the question is: How does this change really work?
The answer is baby steps! First, we just need to be faithful in the little things!
It’s faithfulness in the ordinary that prepares us for the extraordinary. God does extraordinary things through ordinary people, but it always begins with being faithful with the ordinary things. The Bible tells us that: “Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much.” (Luke 16:10)
In Acts 3, God begins to change to the world with two ordinary men – Peter and John – and He gives them a very specific baby-step game plan on how to do it. Peter, who is filled with the Holy Spirit, senses a prompting from God to heal a lame beggar sitting outside of the temple gates. He takes a step of faith and the beggar is healed. Then Peter proclaims the Gospel to all of the onlookers.
Here are five baby steps that we can learn from Peter:
- Draw near to God. The Bible promises that if we draw near to God, then He will draw near to us. In order for Him to change us, we need to be with Him first. Peter’s focus was to worship Him.
- Look through Jesus’ eyes. Peter walked by the lame beggar so many times before and had never paid him much attention. But now, with the Holy Spirit inside of him, his thought process changed. He began to see this guy in a whole new way – the way Jesus would see him. Similarly, we need to begin looking at other people in our work and in our families with new eyes.
- Act on your good impulses! Peter had a nudging from the Holy Spirit to step out of his comfort zone. Have you ever had a thought to help someone? When we have an impulse to do something that shows love to someone, glorifies God, and takes us out of our comfort zone…it’s probably a good sign that the nudge is from God. God is giving us those promptings all of the time. What if we acted on them?
- Give God the credit. After Peter heals the beggar, he testifies to several onlookers to the work that God has done. “By faith in the name of Jesus, this man whom you see and know was made strong.” When God uses us to accomplish extraordinary things, we need to be careful to give God the credit. It’s not about our gifts, personality or “all our faith.” It’s God that does the miracles.
- Boldly share the Good News. A great majority of us struggle with being bold. But when we’re filled and saturated with the Holy Spirit we have boldness. We need boldness to share the Gospel with others.
This week, we’re starting the series Unstoppable. In it, we’ll examine the Biblical truth about God’s agenda for planet earth, His perfect timing and what all of it has to do with us. It’s my prayer that during this series we’ll learn how to recognize God’s unique call for each of our lives so that we can learn how to walk in our calling by taking steps both large and small to change the world.
Keep Pressin’ Ahead,
Chip Ingram, Teaching Pastor
Living on the Edge
Founder & Teaching Pastor, Living on the Edge
Chip Ingram is the CEO and teaching pastor of Living on the Edge, an international teaching and discipleship ministry. A pastor for over thirty years, Chip has a unique ability to communicate truth and challenge people to live out their faith. He is the author of many books, including The Real God, Culture Shock and The Real Heaven. Chip and his wife, Theresa, have four grown children and twelve grandchildren and live in California.More Articles by Chip