“The council members were astonished as they witnessed the bold courage of Peter and John, especially when they discovered that they were just ordinary men who had never had religious training. Then they began to understand the effect Jesus had on them simply by spending time with him.” Acts 4:13 TPT
“And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.” John 12: 32
Something very special occurs when you spend time with Jesus. Peter and John were seen as just ordinary men, but as Acts 4:13 says, the time they spent with Jesus made the leaders of their nation take note. We know that their lives didn’t start that way. As we read the gospels, we know that the men and woman who followed Jesus during his earthly ministry were just ordinary people for their time. They could be just like the people you and I would meet at Home Depot or at our local McDonald’s. Yet, after they spent time with Jesus, they were anything but ordinary.
There seems to be a dichotomy in who they became. On the other hand, they were still very normal people for their day. When there was pressure due to their association with the church or a specific ethnic group, sometimes they caved in to the pressure. When disagreements happened, rather than reconciling, they sometimes went their own way. They did what all too many of us do by taking the easy path rather than the path of Jesus.
On the other hand, they were also like spiritual super heroes… miracle workers… jail breakers; both casting out demons and preaching to the masses. They became people who changed the very culture of an empire through their extraordinary words and deeds. The fruits of their lives literally changed the course of world history.
The religious leaders got one thing right as they considered Peter and John. These men had spent time with Jesus. It was the only thing that could account for what they saw in these men. They were both very normal, but also extraordinary.
The presence of the Lord turns a ‘nobody’ into an extraordinary ‘somebody’ that can change their world. Time with Jesus remains the only ministry any of us really have to offer a world that is in such dire need.
On this Memorial Day weekend, maybe we can allow some extra time listening to, and lifting up the name that is above all names. We may not be those that change nations, but someone may just take note that we have been with Jesus.