By: Pastor Jarren Rogers
“The Lord gives his people perpetual joy when they walk in obedience to him.” – Dwight L. Moody.
Read Acts 5:27-42.
Here we see the apostles are brought before the Sanhedrin for questioning. The meeting takes a turn for the worst and the apostles, spared from being killed, are flogged and sent on their way.
It’s how the apostles react in verse 41 that catches my attention. They have been verbally and physically abused in front of a large group of people yet when they leave Scripture says they are rejoicing God.
The apostles left the Sanhedrin, rejoicing because they had been counted worthy of suffering disgrace for the Name (Acts 5:41).
Even in the midst of persecution and suffering the apostles found joy. Joy in times of hardship is something that can only come from the Holy Spirit. It isn’t something that we can will ourselves to do and it’s not a matter of convincing ourselves that everything is going great.
It is the Holy Spirit changing our perspective and giving us a joy and a peace that passes all understanding.
This doesn’t mean that times can’t be hard and that we can’t cry out to God in distress over our situations. God wants to hear our laments and wants to know our troubles.
But, standing in the embrace of God is the difference between responding with hate and rejoicing with love. The power of the Holy Spirit is the difference between being broken down and being built up. A divine perspective is the difference between discouragement and delight.
God can turn even your worst days into times of rejoicing.
All you have to do is allow Him to work.
Parents: Ask your child about the worst day they’ve ever had. Explain to them this story in Acts 5 and let them know that even during the bad days God wants to make them happy.