The Lost Art of Amazement

All the people saw him walking and heard him praising God. 10 When they realized he was the lame beggar they had seen so often at the Beautiful Gate, they were absolutely astounded! 11 They all rushed out in amazement to Solomon’s Colonnade, where the man was holding tightly to Peter and John.

12 Peter saw his opportunity and addressed the crowd. “People of Israel,” he said, “what is so surprising about this? And why stare at us as though we had made this man walk by our own power or godliness? 13 For it is the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob—the God of all our ancestors—who has brought glory to his servant Jesus by doing this. This is the same Jesus whom you handed over and rejected before Pilate, despite Pilate’s decision to release him. 14 You rejected this holy, righteous one and instead demanded the release of a murderer. 15 You killed the author of life, but God raised him from the dead. And we are witnesses of this fact!

16 “Through faith in the name of Jesus, this man was healed—and you know how crippled he was before. Faith in Jesus’ name has healed him before your very eyes. – Acts 3:9-16

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Another Purple Everglade Flower| May 2019

When was the last time you’ve been amazed? Was it a stunning performance on America’s Got Talent? Was it the incredible blast of Jose Altuve into the third level of seats at Minute Maid Park? Was it your granddaughter’s ability to read – even before she “graduated” from kindergarten? Those are amazing and delightful things to experience to be sure.

But when I hear of a remarkable healing or a apparent change of heart I sometimes wonder. Is it real, fake, or just a fluke? Rather than being amazed when I see healings, life changes, or other miracles, I’m too often skeptical. How about you?

The amazement of the people who saw this once-lame beggar now healed and praising God was key to an encounter with God’s word, and an opportunity to repent and believe. Their amazement opened a door for Peter to put their false-assumptions to rest, and point them to Jesus. Rather than thinking of Peter and John as superstars they were to recognize Jesus as God’s Messiah and their Savior.

I am not in favor of falling for any and all amazing feets paraded before our eyes. But we do well to take heed when a life is changed, a disease is healed, or a relationship rift is healed.  These are all the work of God. Truly there are charlatans, con artists, and false prophets. But the scheisters do not negate the true work of God any more than a counterfeit bill negates the value of a real dollar bill. Too many counterfeits make you skeptical to be sure. But don’t miss the real thing just because there are those who are making a name for themselves.

Who knows? God may have something to say to you around those miraculous signs!

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