I awoke very early this morning, just as the birds began their morning song and found myself thinking about London and the fact that I will be going to a Museum of the Bible function there on 22 June. I found myself feeling slightly nervous - especially for those people I had invited to attend and wondered whether any of them would come in light of the recent terrorist atrocities. And then I got up, made some coffee and sat down to spend some time with the Lord.
How absolutely fantastic our God is - how wonderful that He would know all that was on my mind and that He would answer even before I asked the questions in my head. I read first in 1 Kings 3 - Solomon's answer when God told him he could ask for whatever he wanted. His reply - give me understanding and discernment O Lord so that I can lead your people. That was my prayer - years ago when I heard God's call on my life - when I knew He had given me the desire to proclaim His Truth.
And then I turned to Acts 4 and I had to catch my breath as I stood with Peter and John and heard them tell the authorities that they could not stop speaking about what they had seen and heard. I ran with them to their 'own'....my translation adds the word 'companions' but I knew what Luke was saying. We who have believed in the Lord Jesus and have decided that we will live for His glory, we are part of a fellowship - the fellowship of the burning heart - and we have others who are our 'own' - we belong to them and they belong to us - they have our back and stand with us - they pray and they rejoice and they share and they love because they belong to the One who first loved us. Do you know that sort of fellowship? Do you want that sort of fellowship?
And what did they do when they got to their own? They reported all that had happened and then? Then they lifted up their voices to God 'with one accord'........no one told them what to say - no one read out a list of prayer requests - no one said 'so what are we going to do now'? They simply rejoiced in God - in who He is and what He has done and they asked Him - the God who had given His all for them - they asked Him to give them the courage and the boldness to give their all for Him. 'Grant that Your bondservants may speak Your Word with all confidence, while You extend Your hand to heal and signs and wonders take place through the name of Your holy servant Jesus. What was God's answer? The place where they was shaken and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak the Word of God with boldness.
Oh Lord, that we might pray that today - that we might come together, join with our 'own' and beseech You to grant that we might speak Your Word with confidence. Oh Lord, that we might be brought to a place of knowing Your Word so well that we don't need to carry the Book with us - that we can stand in every place and talk about our wonderful and glorious Saviour so that men may receive Your truth and be set free.
That is my prayer this morning - give me more of You Lord, more knowledge and experience of Your grace and Your Truth; give me confidence and boldness to speak out what I know. Connect me to those people who have that same desire - the desire for Truth in their innermost being - join me together with those who love Your Word and long for Your appearing and who have decided that until they see You face to face - they will live for You.
We will be praising our Saviour and calling on His name on June 26 (from 7pm) at the DT Centre in Cirencester - please won't you come and be with your 'own' - let us cry out to the Lord together and know that His answer will be to fill us with more of Himself, more of His Spirit that we might stand firm in these days.