14 Sep “For All” – Day Sixteen
Scripture: Acts 2:42 NLT – “All the believers devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, and to fellowship, and to sharing in meals (including the Lord’s Supper), and to prayer.”
Observation: The first believers in Jesus are forming a community of like-minded individuals. They come together to love one another as well as those in their community, displaying the love of Jesus. They also invite others to get to know Jesus and have a relationship with him.
Application: Have you ever seen one of those cheesy late night infomercials? You know, the ones where they promise this one gadget will replace all the tools in your tool box or that one kitchen gadget that will replace everything on your kitchen counter? Most of you probably looked at those infomercials the same way I did, like, yeah this is sketchy. This is too good to be true. Well to be completely honest, when I think about my first gathering at The Journey and witnessing all that was taking place, I felt the same way. I was all-the-way-skeptical.
Just like the people in the verses previous to our verse today, (Acts 2:5-13) I could not believe what I was experiencing in my first year at The Journey. The people were showing genuine care for each other, they were hugging with big expressions of joy, and the pastors were amongst the crowd like regular people. It was all too weird to me. I thought, “No one is that happy. This is all fake, what are these people covering up?” To me, it just did not sit right. It was unbelievable.
Routinely, I would worship, gather and go home. However, one Sunday, Pastor Mark taught about joy. At this time, I was not the happiest person walking around, so this message was needed. I thought to myself, “The pastor is saying I can have joy and experience happiness if I practice a slot and spot and get with a group of like-minded individuals. Who could be like me?” I just knew me and these “like-minded” would have nothing in common, but I had to prove myself right.
Needless to say, I was wrong. In my second J-Group, I was able to experience the happiness and the love that I was seeing at The Journey. Joining this small group of people allowed me to learn more about God and his love for me. I also found out that others were going through similar situations that I was going through, such as lack of self esteem or anxiety. I was able to share my stories, release some burdens and finally walk around with a true smile on my face.
Now I won’t lie to you, I am still far from perfect and those skeptical thoughts try to make their way in but, being involved in J-Groups and the J-Team has allowed me to combat that negativity. As I mentioned, this skeptic has been made into a believer. I see that God is changing my life through serving and showing me that people can come together and not have ulterior motives.
My challenge to you today is to take that next step, whatever that is for you. It could be joining the J-Team, joining a J-Group or it could even be something like coming consistently to church.
Prayer: Father, Thank you for making me a believer. Thank you for placing me in a community where I felt safe to experience your love. Give me the opportunity to allow someone to experience the same love so that we can add to the Kingdom. Amen.
Journey Worship J-Teamer
Michelle has been attending The Journey for four years and serving on the worship team for three. Being at The Journey has allowed her to build her relationship with God, and she looks forward to the continued growth in the relationship. Michelle enjoys shopping, cooking, hanging with her friends and, most of all, traveling.
- Read Acts Chapter 1 and 2
- Pray and ask God what your next steps are: Joining a J-Group, leading a J-Group, becoming a J-Teamer or joining us again for tomorrow’s devotional. Not sure what that step is? We would love to help you figure that out, just check out Plugged In here!
- Gather consistently. We have three locations! Newark, DE, (Saturday at 5 p.m., Sunday at 9 a.m., 10:30 a.m. and 12 p.m.); Hockessin, DE, (Sunday at 10 a.m.) and Online (Saturday at 5 p.m., Sunday at 9 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.)
Lamar LiffridgePosted at 05:33h, 14 September
Good job Michelle
Katie ValetuttiPosted at 05:54h, 14 September
Michelle, we’re so glad that you put your skepticism to the test and found your joy in Jesus through gathering, connecting, and serving! What a great call for all of us to follow your lead. Thank you!
Jayme RolloPosted at 06:24h, 14 September
Michelle, your story is so relatable! It’s still sometimes hard for me to believe that I have been so blessed with the incredible friendships I’ve made at The Journey. Thank you for sharing 🙂
Court NeilPosted at 07:53h, 14 September
Amen, Michelle! God’s love never fails, and he just knew you’d find like-minded people. We don’t walk this earth alone: God and our like-minded people will always be there for us!! So blessed you found your way through skepticism:)
Sandra BerryPosted at 08:34h, 14 September
Thank you Michelle for sharing. Great testimony! Love your realness.
Alfred R CeaserPosted at 08:48h, 14 September
Great job sharing your heart, Michelle! Glad that your faithfulness paid off.
Mark McDonaldPosted at 08:55h, 14 September
Michelle, well said. I understand all to well what’s it’s like to be a skeptic. I remember my first couple years at TJ and was still waiting for the it her shoe to drop. But I have met some tremendous people who have really impacted my life for the food.