After the lame man is healed (Acts 3:5-8) Peter and John face persecution from the local officials and leaders. Despite the circumstances, they display boldness and confidence. They are told “...not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus.” (v.18 NIV) “But Peter and John replied, ‘Which is right in God’s eyes: to listen to you or to him? You be the judges! As for us, we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.’” (v. 19-20 NIV)
After all of this “...they let them go, finding no way to punish them, because of the people, for all were praising God for what had happened.” (v. 21 ESV) What is beautiful about this chapter is the response of the other believers. Peter and John go back to their friends to tell them what happened. Their friends response? “...they lifted their voices together to God.” (v. 24 ESV) It doesn’t say anything about them being afraid, angry, or discouraged. Instead, the were moved to pray.
This is their natural response to opposition because of the Holy Spirit.
How do you respond to difficult circumstances? How do you respond when things don’t go your way? I often tend to grow anxious or angry. I know that this is not the Holy Spirit at work. This is my sinful nature at work. I must invite the Holy Spirit in, in all circumstances. My hope is that we can all come to a place of knowing our father God in such a way that our natural response to trials and troubles is to lift our voices to him!