This is the first recorded miracle after Pentecost, the first time we see the disciples healing someone, a healing that serves as an attention-getter for all those in the Temple that day. The attention the healing generates is the first opportunity we see for the newly anointed disciples to speak out to non-believers—and they do! For those listening, they deftly tie in Jesus with the Yahweh that the Jews know: Jesus is no departure from the Jewish faith, but a continuation of the manifestation of the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. They remind the listeners of recent history—“this is the same Jesus whom you handed over and rejected before Pilate … you rejected this holy, righteous one.” Peter attributes the healing of the man they’ve all seen crippled and begging for years to the power of Jesus, to the power of just his name. And thus, we see the post-resurrection, post-ascension, post-Pentecost ministry of the disciples begin.
What I find myself wondering is how I can spot opportunities to tie the Gospel into everyday occurrences. Peter and John saw the beggar, the lame man who was at that gate all the time, and not only blessed his socks off, but put themselves in a sweet spot to speak truth to all who would listen. I often feel like I could speak truth if only given the opportunity. If—you know—it “comes up.” So I pray for the right opportunities and the right words. And there’s nothing wrong with that. But I think I need to add a prayer to seethe opportunities, to have God-inspired insight into how to bridge the every-day stuff to organically tie in truth.