Recently while studying Acts 3, I stumbled upon a principle that has altered some of my paradigms. There is a certain man that has been lame for 40 years. A group of unnamed winners have carried this man daily to the church. When the lame man gets to church, he is begging alms of all that pass by. The individuals that carried this man daily were very compassionate. They expected to carry him to church and carry him home. Therefore, a pattern was developed.
But Peter and John show up to the church one day. The lame man looks to them for some coins to put in his cup. Peter fastens his eyes on him, and says rise up and walk. Then Peter reaches down and grabs the lame man by the hand and the man stands to his feet.
I’ve often thought that the lame mans’ healing was predicated by his own expectation. However, I see this story different now. Maybe the ministries expectation was the key to the miracle. One group taught the lame man that they expected to carry him to and from church. The apostolic ministry of Peter and John was quite different. They expected this man to rise up and walk.
Perhaps we get what we expect out of people. What if we raised our expectations of people? Instead of letting down on our requirements for membership, what if we raised them? If we expected commitment, I think we would get it. If we expect peoples’ time, talent, and treasure, I bet we would see a few more people rise up and walk. I see great potential in people. But we need to challenge people instead of enabling them to stay crippled in their walk with God.
Rise up and walk!