Memorize Acts 5:29
Most any believer would agree that our obedience belongs to the Lord and no one else — certainly not our peers, other humans capable of sin and brokenness and death. But living that out — choosing every day and in each moment to listen to the guidance of God instead of the voices around us? That’s hard work. It’s active work. It doesn’t happen without intention, humility, and accountability.
For me, stories of the saints are encouraging because they’re real people being used by God. Note I didn’t say real people doing amazing work, or changing the world, or being extremely holy. They are real, broken, prideful, stubborn people. But when they submit themselves fully to God, He is faithful to act, and heal, and forgive.
The apostles that declared to the Sanhedrin, “we must obey God rather than human beings!” weren’t super holy Christians. I feel like they were, because they are apostles, and in the Bible, and incredibly courageous in proclaiming Jesus. But they were just men, transformed by their encounters with Christ Jesus and filled with the Holy Spirit. We’re invited to that same transformation. We won’t cease being normal people with flaws, hurts and burdens, but we will be made new. We will have a new purpose and peace that cannot be swayed by the ever-changing standards of human beings. It’s this transformation that gives us the assurance and courage to submit to God, and not humanity.