What comes into your mind when you think of this word? Selling is often done when one wants to upgrade from one thing to another, or move from one location to another or even when things are tight to see themselves through… (Of course, many do donate their stuff that are still in excellent condition to those in need). However, it is this term selling that is on my mind right now.
Yesterday night however, when I saw this term in the Bible I did a double take. Yes, it’s a very familiar passage. Yet it’s incredible how the standards of loving one another have been set high and the example has already taken place.
The phrase was, “Selling their possessions and goods”. Why were the people selling their possession and goods?
Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need – Acts 2:45
Who were selling their possessions and goods? Who were the “anyone” who had need? These were all the believers and this was taking place amidst themselves. This was the early church or rather Body of Christ… setting the example of what it really is all about…
They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe, and many wonders and miraculous signs were done by the apostles. All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved – Acts 2:42-47
It was about togetherness.. it was about enjoying the favour of all the people… In fact when you look at it, it was about loving God with all their heart, soul, mind and strength that there was no selfishness or “me” attitude.. and that bubbled over into loving their neighbours as themselves. The reward of their obedience resulted in their numbers increasing – the numbers of those who were being saved… What more of a witness of God’s love than this??
Think about the practicality.. it was a time of no technology, no electricity or electronics, no automated vehicles… no proper roads and everything so far away… It was a time where they had to walk distances to their fields or walk even further to sell their stuff especially if businesses… Yet they continued to meeting together EVERY day.. in both the temple courts and in their homes.. And they had GLAD and SINCERE hearts… They were the vessels of God’s love as they devoted themselves to praising Him and to fellowship with both Him and each others..
I don’t know about you, but I know I have fallen greatly from these standards… Will I be able to “sell” to help another? Or would I prefer to “save” for a rainy day? Ok.. as I have been living by faith for over 7 years, savings is not an option for me.. I live by the day as God blesses my needs (personal as well as ministry) through the love of other people as He burdens them without regular support.
This passage reminded me of a vision I have had for a while.. Right now I have a need for accomodation but I also want it to be doubled up as a youth centre with another young family – who also have a need for accommodation and are surrendered to loving and ministering to others – living there on the same premises.. so that the youth have a healthy place to hang out and seek holistic growth if they choose to do so.. It is to begin with Christian youth to help reduce avenues of temptation. My vision for the centre would have an office room, prayer / counselling rooms, guest rooms (for temporary stay for any youth in dire need and also for any volunteers) and also a room for recreation (art, crafts, board games etc). Refreshments to be made available so that the youth don’t have to visit coffee shops and malls where other vices are readily available. A place for healing and discipleship.. with other adults volunteering to make this happen.. to provide a safe place. It’s a big dream.. but I believe in God’s provision for this vision.
How nice it would be if each one of us (me inclusive) can follow the model of the early church, which in turn is obedience unto the two greatest commandments? How awesome would it be if we can have the selflessness to share all that we have, and even sell our goods and possessions to ensure all our needs are met? Wow… simply superb – makes me speechless..
Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people,
especially to those who belong to the family of believers” – Galatians 6:9-10