From Unsure to Secure [Part 1]

Are you ready for some Good News?

The Gospel is good news not just because God is with you but also because you are with God!

Today’s Text: “Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, they were astonished. And they recognized that they had been with Jesus.” (Acts 4:13, ESV)

We’re in a new series on the life of Peter, an ordinary man whose life was transformed by being with Jesus. When authorities saw the courage and power flowing in Peter, they recognized that he had been with Jesus.

A self-help author has famously claimed that you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with. The claim isn’t far from the truth. We are so easily, so unthinkingly, shaped by the people with whom we spend the most time. After over 31 years of marriage, Anne and I chuckle at how often we catch ourselves thinking the same thought. We’ve been driving down the highway in silence when, at precisely the same moment, we speak and find that the exact same thought was on our minds.

It’s not a conscious thought process when you become like someone with whom you spend your life. For example, you don’t “plan” or “try” to talk the way your parents talk. Growing up in the South, I never “tried” to have a southern accent. You just pick it up from being around people who speak with a Southern drawl.

Or, consider another example. My father was quite artistic. As a young man, he doodled with cartoons a good bit. In fact, he drew the pictures for his high school yearbook. As I a kid, I enjoyed art too. When I was in Jr. High School, school leaders asked me to draw pictures for the yearbook. It never even dawned on me until years later that I had mirrored my father’s teenage years in our yearbook artwork. Similarly, when I’m driving, I drum my thumbs on the steering wheel. It wasn’t until years of driving that I recognized that I was “drumming” the wheel in the exact manner that my Dad did.

If I unthinkingly become like my father doodling cartoons or thumping a steering wheel to the radio, how much might we become like Christ simply by being with Him.

The transformation in Peter’s life didn’t come through Peter’s vows to “be more like Jesus.” The transformation came simply by being with Jesus. The glory of the Good News is not just that God has committed Himself to being with you; He has also invited you to be with Him! As you are with Him, you become like Him. And that’s the Gospel!

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