“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.”
By far the most challenging and difficult part of my life has been to keep my faith. It has required strength, courage, boldness, passion and perserverence. But above all else, my faith has demanded devotion.
Acts tells us that the believers devoted themselves to their faith. Another translation says that they continued stedfastly. When you look at the word continue you can see that it is made up of three components. 1. “to begin”, 2. “to become”, 3. “to come to pass”. In other words, the beginning of change, the process of change and the affect of the change in their lives. This little tidbit of information holds so much meaning for us as followers of Christ.
I know that I so often see this passage as present tense; almost as if the believers were simply molded into one scene that was just them praying, eating and studying together, without opposition, struggle or distraction. But this truly isn’t the case. The word devotion, or continuing stedfastly, illustrates for us that the scene wasn’t concrete. It shows us that these people did indeed experience ups and downs just as we do today, and through it all, devotion was not only demanded of them, but required. In the beginning of their faith, they needed devotion. In the midst of building their faith, they needed devotion. In seeing the blessing of their faith, they still needed devotion! No matter what hardship passed over them or what blessing was given to them, they needed to remain devoted. And they did.
As believers and followers of Christ, we too will experience failure, hardship, disappointment, success and blessing and through it all we need to remain dedicated. We need to take the example of early believers to continue in prayer, study and fellowship no matter what our circumstances or what life hands us.
Faith demands devotion; in our start, in our process and in our blessing.