Leaping and Praising God

A reading for Thursday, May 14, 2020: Acts 3:1-10.

"...he entered the temple with them, walking and leaping and praising God."

It's helpful at times to imagine ourselves as part of stories from scripture. We can choose a character from the story and imagine ourselves in that position. Most of the time when reading our lesson today, my guess is that we would choose to be Peter. To have the power to heal in such an incredible way, and to emulate the compassion and love of Jesus is truly something to aspire to. Who wouldn't choose to be Peter in the story?

But what if we were the beggar instead? Imagine your life sitting by the gate, begging for alms. You have given up a long time ago that your life could be different. I wonder if the crippled beggar ever dreamed of what his life could be if only he could walk? Even if you know that Peter and John were followers of Jesus, you can't imagine that they could offer you anything more than what you expect from everybody else. Alms please?

But then instead of alms (you are disappointed), Peter offers to give you something you never thought possible. You are able to stand. Your feet and ankles are suddenly strong and even sturdy enough to jump. Can you imagine the kind of joy and celebration that would bring to your life? 

Luke tells us that the man enters the Temple with Peter and John in a great celebration. He is leaping and praising God, again with Peter and John. He is no less than them. They are together, enjoying the blessings that God had given to them all three.

Here's the thing... the story of what God is doing continues even today. Are you still sitting in a life with no joy, one that you long ago have given up on? Are your expectations so diminished that things can be different that you can only dream of asking God for the least imaginable?

Truth is, we don't have to know what to ask for, or even ask for the right things to be given God's blessings. Simply seek God in prayer and thanksgiving, and you might find yourself leaping for joy and praising God. We can all enjoy the things God gives us. Thanks be to God!


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