“The members of the council were amazed when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, for they could see that they were ordinary men with no special training in the Scriptures. They also recognized them as men who had been with Jesus.” Acts 4:13 NLT
I alway had a thing for art as a kid. Outside of gym, it was the class I looked forward to the most. My excitement about it didn’t mean I was good at it. Case in point: look at ANY art project I brought home to my parents.
One of my earliest art memories was these seemingly ordinary black and white drawings. They seemed to have no color to them nor were we given any colors to put on them. All the class was supplied with was a dixie cup of water and a small paint brush. We’d dip the brush into the water and, when the we brush came in contact with the paper, color would appear. The paper/drawing already had the color infused in it; the water simply activated the color to cause it to appear.
Looking back, I know this was the way to take the messiness out of painting while giving us kids the feeling of painting. But I think there’s a bigger picture to understand (pun intended): the color was released by contact.
This whole week, I’ve been sitting on this idea of character that out of last Sunday’s message at kfirst. It’s my heart to see people not just step into the dreams God has given but develop the character that is able to sustain them there.
One of the key ways we develop character is through contact.
Like a brush in the hands of an artist, the canvas is transformed by contact. With each stroke, the surface takes on the color of the paint dictated by the pressure of the bristles. And you and I are no different. We take on the character of what you come in contact with. The more we expose ourselves to influences, the more we should expect those influences to affect our character.
Have you ever been caught off guard when something came out of your mouth? Have you ever be surprised by a reaction you had? I’m willing to bet there is something/someone you’ve been in contact with that has shaped the character you are experiencing. From the family that nurtured you to the influences you allow, your character is shaped by what you come in contact with.
This is what caught my eye in Acts 4:13. These were seemingly ordinary men. But something was different about them. They had come in contact with something that took the ordinary into the extraordinary. They were “men who had been with Jesus.”
What an amazing statement to their character and challenge to our own. When people see us, experience us, and/or get close to us, are our lives colored by our contact with Jesus? Can the character of Jesus be clearly seen? My simple response is to simply humble myself and pray,
Lord, today I draw close to you. I give you every part of me. Let me become more aware of you and how you desire to work in my life. Like a brush to paper, let your life shape the color of my character so that people can see the Christ in me, the hope of glory. Amen.
Thanks for letting me ramble…