Tuesday, July 12 – Acts 8:18-24
Now when Simon saw that the Spirit was given 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 acquire the gift of God with money! You have no part or share in this matter, for your heart is not right before God. Therefore, repent of this wickedness of yours, and pray to the Lord that, if possible, the intention of your heart will be forgiven you. For I see that you are in the gall of bitterness and in the bondage of unrighteousness.” But Simon answered and said, “Pray to the Lord for me yourselves, so that nothing of what you have said may come upon me.”
Have you ever tried to quit a habit? Many times, the longer you keep a habit, the harder it is to break. Habits are easy to go back to because they are a part of who we are for a season. Simon had made a name for himself through doing great acts of wonder and power. This earned him notoriety, honor, and influence among the people of Samaria. He made his decision to follow Jesus, but soon after he saw a way to enhance the gifts that he had before to make a name for himself. The habit of craving fame and power crept back into life.
When we forget who we are in Jesus, it is easy to fall into the same temptation. We forget that we are already known by God, loved by God, and called to a purpose by Him. We don’t have to waste our time trying to prove ourselves to others or using spiritual language to sound deeper than we are. God knows exactly where you are—including your strengths and your struggles—and He is ready to use and equip you. This is not for your social status or to make feel like you have “arrived” in your faith. He has already made your “arrival” secure. Your status, your wealth, and your influence don’t change your value to God. He wants to use you for His glory and is calling you to trust Him in that.
- When was a time you desired a better social status or more influence? Why?
- What are some gifts and resources God has given you that you can use for His glory instead of your gain?
- Pray and repent from the habits you have held onto that are not glorifying to Him.