For a few years, my family and I lived near enough to our church’s meeting location that we could bike to church services. The youngest ones, too little to bike any distance, could ride in a bike trailer behind a grown-up’s bicycle. I was too big for the trailer, but I didn’t have a bike of my own. Sometimes I would try to keep up with my family on a scooter. That was hard work, though, and I couldn’t scooter fast enough to stay with the rest of the family for long.
However, a couple at our church—Ted and Kim—noticed our dilemma and decided to help. They owned a bike that would suit my size, and they weren’t using it at the time. Ted and Kim didn’t ask my family to pay for the bike; they simply gave it to me. And thanks to that gift, my family enjoyed many hours of outdoor time, including biking to church together.
In the book of Acts, we see people during the time of the early church who were radically changed by the forgiveness and new life they were experiencing in Jesus, and they shared what they had with one another—just like how Ted and Kim gave that bike to me. The Christ followers described in Acts gave generously to one another, sharing in one another’s needs by helping to meet those needs. This kind of love for others is a gift from God, the natural overflow of His enormous love for us (1 John 4:19).
As we consider how to live out our faith in Jesus, the One who rescued us from the punishment our sins deserve and brought us into a relationship with God, we can look to the early believers as an example—and then look for people in our lives who might need the exact thing we can share—all the while looking to Jesus, the One who is so generous to us. • Allison Wilson Lee
• When Jesus came and lived among us, He not only showed that God cares about our needs, but He also identified with our needs. God humbled Himself to experience pain and lack firsthand, ultimately dying on the cross for us, so that we could be with Him forever and share in the abundance of the new heavens and earth with Him. As we wait in hope for Jesus’s return, we can catch glimpses of the restoration He is bringing when we see people who have been changed by His love and the power of His resurrection who are giving generously to one another. Can you think of a time someone stepped in to help when you had a need? What was that like?
• Consider taking a moment to pray, thanking God for His generous love and asking Him for ideas of how you could share with someone who could benefit from what you have to offer.
All the believers…shared everything they had. Acts 4:32 (NLT)