Category Archives: Acts

A Surprise Impact of Someone Else’s New Beginnings

So, if I am being completely honest (and showing a little transparency) I would have to admit something.  Ever since I can remember, I become extremely uncomfortable when my church service doesn’t follow the normal pattern.  This is especially true when my pastor is gone or when other people are speaking.  I know that whenever the Word of God is preached, truth is proclaimed and I should not care.  So, yes, I will admit that this isn’t a flattering piece of information to share; it is just my response.  I usually feel really uneasy…maybe it’s because I do not like new things.  Maybe I place too much emphasis on the speaker.  Whatever it may be…it just is.  So, today, my pastor was at church; but he introduced another pastor who would be sharing the sermon.  So, as usual, I became uneasy and, to be perfectly honest, sort a shut him out for a bit.

But because I realize this about myself, I have a created a coping mechanism….take notes and write thoughts down.  As a teacher, I am constantly encouraging students to find something for themselves in every class period even if they are not being entertained or if the lesson seems uninteresting or unimportant. So, I work to be a better example of my own advice.

As the pastor continued, I maintained my attentiveness and after about 15 minutes, I realized just why he was speaking today.  He shared testimony of the direction God was taking his life….he is leaving our church and starting a church plant.  He went on to share all the ways that God used a variety of unconnected circumstances, people, coffee shop visits, twitter messages, and brought them all together to make sense of the WILL HE had for this pastor.

I was so impressed and moved by his testimony.  He is a 51 year old man with grown older children, but he has realized that the comfortable life he has lived for over 20 years was being shaken up. There was a new beginning.  God has new plans to uproot him and plant him in a community that desperately needs a man sensitive to the needs of the homeless, the educated, and others that have obvious need for spiritual awakening and change.  I could see why God would choose this man.  Even though I really do not know this pastor, it is obvious through his words today that he has a genuine concern and a willingness to show compassion to needy people.  He has worked for years ministering to children, but his heart is also sensitive to different demographic of people, just as all of our hearts should be.

So, I am thankful for the change in today’s church service.  I need to hear testimony of amazing transformation in the mind of others.  Thank you, Pastor Paul Persi for sharing your heart and soul.

The power of the Holy Spirit 

Calls us away sometimes from the things we love

To the things that scare us most

To things that challenge us

To things that will amaze us

It will be hard

It is never too late to change course and start to TRUST

Acts 1:8  But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses  in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth

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The Foundation Cornerstone – The courage of ordinary men with an extraordinary testimony

Peter and John were just ordinary men with an extraordinary testimony and strength they only received through the saving power of Christ.  They were not afraid of prison, persecution, or any other threat that could be made.  Instead of backing down against the threats, they prayed for more boldness so that they could share the dramatic change that Christ had made in their lives and prepare others for a life free from sin, prepared for Christ’s return to the earth.  Their first-hand eyewitness accounts of Christ were so powerful that these men could not back down; they wanted all to hear and believe.  I need to be willing to share the first hand accounts of the grace, peace, and hope God has provided to me through the saving blood of Christ.

Here is the third installment of the book of Acts through Timelines

Acts Chapters Three And Four

Time for the Growth of the Gospel – Acts 2

So, bringing on the second installment of my study in Acts.  I love the historical look at the book as well as the way the Old Testament is used by the Apostle Peter to remind the Jews of the prophecy being fulfilled on this Day of Pentecost circa AD 30.  Enjoy my next timeline hosted here..

Acts Chapter Two Timeline

Taking Time in the Book of Acts

Mount of Olives

So, something I have realized as a teacher is that I am a hands on learner who likes to touch and feel and organize information (in “teachy” terms, this is called Kinesthetic and Visual learning.)  So, as I approach the book of Acts, I am going to venture into using a tool that I came across in my teacher studies.  It’s a timeline that integrates both video, image, and text.  I figure if I do something with the material I am reading and studying about, perhaps more will stick with me. So, here is the first installment of my Timeline for Acts.  (we will see how many other installments I end up with)  Mostly, this is for me, but I figured I would share and perhaps you can learn something, too.

Timeline for Acts Chapter One