This week my devotions led me to Acts 5, where the disciples were brought before the Sanhedrin and questioned by the high priest. The high priest scolded the disciples because they had been warned not to speak of Jesus, but failed to comply. And in Acts 5:29, Peter responds by saying: “We must obey God rather than human beings!”
In the midst of persecution and even the fear of death, Peter speaks boldly before the high priest. He didn’t let anyone or anything keep him from being obedient to the Lord. This is God’s desire for our lives: that we would be people who walk in obedience.
What does obedience look like for us today? Often times we read this statement from Peter and think, “Yeah, nothing’s going to stop me from speaking my mind.” But is that actually what Jesus is asking of us?
There are times in life when God calls us to take a stand and speak up like Peter. But there are also times when God asks us to be quiet. The key is to be obedient to what God is asking of us in each moment. Are we supposed to speak up or are we supposed to be silent? Are we supposed to take action or are we supposed to be still? The Scriptures are full of times when God called people to action; when He called them to wait; when He called them to speak; and when He had them be silent.
In Acts, the disciples were empowered by the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit was their guide to hearing and knowing the voice of the Lord. It was through the power of the Spirit that they were able to truly walk in obedience and live the life that God was calling them to live.
I encourage all of us today to allow the Holy Spirit to empower us to walk in obedience. May we seek the Lord and allow Him to help us know how to respond. Every situation is different and our obedience to the Lord ushers in the powerful work of the Holy Spirit to do far more that we could ever hope or imagine in our own strength!