This week we wrapped up the after-camp study "The Big Picture." We began the night playing "The Number Game" where students sat in a circle and had to randomly count out loud to a specific number. The twist was their eyes were closed and if two people spoke at once they had to start over from the beginning. Afterward we discussed the difficulties in the exercise and what emotions they felt while playing. The consensus was that you felt a little bit of anticipation trying to decide whether you should speak up or stay quiet. We discussed some other moments in life where you feel anticipation and even anticipation in events such as standing before a roller coaster. We all face moments of anticipation that are intimidation and we need to know what to do and how to respond. This happens to everyone especially when following Jesus.
We split into small groups and then came back together to discuss as a larger group the following:
Group 1 - Acts 3:1-8
This is the story of Peter and John walking to the temple and a crippled man is sitting and begging. The man thought that Peter and John would give him some money, but instead they healed him in the name of Jesus.
-Why would the temple be a good place to sit and beg?
-How do you respond when you see a beggar?
-How did Peter and John respond to him?
-In verse 4, Peter told the man "Look at us!" What did the beggar expect Peter and John to do to him?
-In verse 6, why do you think Peter commanded him to walk "In the name of Jesus Christ?" Why didn't he just say "walk?"
Group 2- Acts 4:1-20
After Peter and John healed the man and continued preaching Jesus, some people got mad and they were arrested. While standing on trial Peter was filled with the Holy Spirit and proclaimed boldly the name of Jesus. He was faced with an intimidating situation, but was not alone.
-What happened to Peter and John?
-Why were the Sadducees upset with them?
-Why specifically was Peter able to give such a great response to the Sanhedrin?
-Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you did not know how to respond?
-Why were the people amazed at Peter and John's confidence?
I have always loved verse 13 in this chapter. While there is nothing wrong at all with theological education, or education in general, nothing can take place of spending quality time with Jesus. You can learn all the information in the world, but as I have said many times before if you do not make application in how you live your life then it is a complete waste.
The truth is, we will all face moments in life where we are intimidated and unsure what to do or say in following Jesus. If we have been saved, we can rest easy in the fact that the Holy Spirit is there with us and will help us to respond the way that we should. Another thing we must consider is what I talked about in the previous paragraph. Spending time with Jesus daily helps us in these intimidating situations. We must get to know the One we claim to follow with our lives so that we can be empowered by the Holy Spirit.