2 Chronicles 3-4
…when Simon (the magician) saw that the Spirit was bestowed through the laying on of the apostles’ hands, he offered them money, saying, “Give this authority to me as well, so that everyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.” But Peter said to him, “May your silver perish with you, because you thought you could obtain the gift of God with money! . – Acts 8:18-20
In today’s reading from the Acts of the Apostles, the church is starting spread out because of the persecutions taking place in Jerusalem. How, what is intended for evil actually brings about good, because disciples like Philip are taking their love for Jesus with them as they disperse, bringing the good news that they cannot keep for themselves. They went forth with the power of the Holy Spirit in them and worked many signs through prayer, that even Simon the magician was converted.
But Simon also shows us that even in the Church we can have misunderstandings of how to obtain power. It isn’t something earned, or something we can purchase with good works. The gifts of the spirit are just that, gifts, freely given for us to use for God’s glory.
Let us seek to do God’s will using our gifts. Not for our glory, or power, but that God and His love may be revealed to the world.
May God bless you.
2 Samuel 23-24
“Where can we buy enough food for them to eat?” … Philip answered him, “Two hundred days’ wages worth of food would not be enough for each of them to have a little.” … Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter, said to him,“There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish; but what good are these for so many?” John 6:6-9
Two of Jesus’ inner circle, two different perspectives. Jesus asks where to buy food. Philip was from Bethsaida, and would have known where to buy supplies. But Philip is pessimistic about the outcome, seeing the crowd and estimating it would take at least half a year’s wages to cover the cost of purchasing food supplies. Andrew, on the other hand, brings forward a young boy with his poor man’s bread and small fishes. He knows its not much, but its something to start with.
When we are faced with a problem, how do we approach it? Are we quick to see insurmountable obstacles like Philip, or do we look for something – anything – that can be done to help close the gap on the need at hand like Andrew? How much more can we offer what little we have to Jesus, and in bringing it to Him, trust that He will do what is necessary.
Let us approach the Lord today with all that we have; it might not be much, but in the hands of Jesus, it is more than enough.
May God bless you.