Been on a bit of a writing break, bear with me while I try and get back into the swing of things! I’ll start off today with some classic truth from one of my favorites…
The men Jesus chose as His disciples were not exactly the most mature or qualified people for the job at hand. They came from all different walks of life, had different personalities and temperaments. The Bible tells us that they were both “uneducated and untrained” (Acts 4:13). Simon was a ‘zealot’, Matthew a hated tax collector, Peter was impulsive, none had much understanding of what they were signing up for. It was like Jesus was pulling an entire JV team off the benches and telling them “suit up!”
What did they have then, that made Jesus choose them? Lets look again at the rest of the verse from Acts 4:
“Now when they (the high priests) saw the BOLDNESS of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men, they marveled. And they realized that they had been with Jesus” (v 14).
They prayed for boldness, asked for wisdom and it changed everything. They may not have been the smartest, but they were teachable. They struggled and messed up, but they overcame.
“they were made like lions to meet any difficulty. They were made to stand any test, and these men that failed before the crucifixion, when the power of God fell upon them in the upper room, they came out in front of all those people who were gathered together and accused them of crucifying the Lord. They were bold. What made them so? I will tell you. Purity is bold. Take, for instance, a little child. It will gaze straight into your eyes for as long as you like, without winking once. The more pure, the more bold; and I tell you, God wants to bring us into that divine purity of heart and life – that holy boldness. Not self-righteousness; put a pure, holy, divine appointment by One Who will come in and live with you, defying the powers of satan, and standing you in a place of victory – overcoming the world” (Smith Wigglesworth, On Prayer, Powers, and Miracles)
Think on it – the more pure we are in our thinking, the more bold we are able to be in our actions. If I believe something to be true, I act accordingly. Simple, childlike faith in the One who says what He means and means what He says. “If you abide in My Word you are truly My disciples” (John 8:31). If we submit to His words, take them at face value and apply them… mountains will move.
The disciples didn’t become like lions on account of their natural abilities. In spite of all their shortcomings, they simply set their hearts to keep walking with Jesus. When our hearts are single-minded and focused on following Him, it doesn’t really matter if we fall or fail. A child learns to walk by falling. Eventually the things that once tripped us up have no power over us and we move on. Purity of heart makes us bold; we can believe what He says, proclaim it, and not fret about all the outcomes.
I’ll end on one more quote from Wigglesworth that sums it up;
“The scriptures do not tell two stories. They tell the truth. The power of God can remodel you. Pure in mind, heart and actions – pure right through.”
You don’t need to be a natural born anything to be a disciple – all He asks is for an open heart submitted to Him. He will purify and simplify everything until we are exactly who He created us to be!