4 The two of them, sent on their way by the Holy Spirit, went down to Seleucia and sailed from there to Cyprus. 5 When they arrived at Salamis, they proclaimed the word of God in the Jewish synagogues. John was with them as their helper.
6 They traveled through the whole island until they came to Paphos. There they met a Jewish sorcerer and false prophet named Bar-Jesus,7 who was an attendant of the proconsul,Sergius Paulus. The proconsul, an intelligent man, sent for Barnabas and Saul because he wanted to hear the word of God. 8 But Elymas the sorcerer (for that is what his name means) opposed them and tried to turn the proconsulfrom the faith. 9 Then Saul, who was also called Paul, filled with the Holy Spirit, looked straight at Elymas and said, 10 “You are a child of the devil and an enemy of everything that is right! You are full of all kinds of deceit and trickery. Will you never stop perverting the right ways of the Lord? 11 Now the hand of the Lord is against you. You are going to be blind for a time, not even able to see the light of the sun.”
Immediately mist and darkness came over him, and he groped about, seeking someone to lead him by the hand. 12 When the proconsul saw what had happened, he believed, for he was amazed at the teaching about the Lord
This is some immense bravery! We see the same fellow who just a few chapters ago was being lowered down out of a window to escape persecution, now he is standing up against someone who is adamantly coming against God’s Word. As discussed yesterday, all these differences are based around those words in the beginning of this “sent on their way BY the Holy Spirit.” They are being led by Him and He is dictating when things should be different. He dictates when they are bold, when they are to flee, when they are to look “afraid” to the world and when they are to look “brave” to the world. All for the next few verses: “When the proconsul saw what had happened, he believed.” I cannot stress enough how everything in your life is supposed to be focused on furthering your relation with the Lord and sharing that with others. (Matthew 22 paraphrase: Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind also Love your neighbor as yourself)
The book of Acts shows how God used a group of ordinary men and based upon their devotion to the Lord and obedience to the Spirit they did incredible things! Some of men, like Saul, were extremely bad people, yet his devotion to the Lord eclipsed his past mistakes. Our lives are like a canvas for the Creator to paint yet another portrait of reconciliation for the world. We have to realize the purpose of our lives (after the fall) and embrace it. We have to preach to ourselves and remind ourselves daily that we aren’t here for ourselves. We aren’t here for self pleasure and comfort. If we were we are failing miserably! Instead, we must preach to ourselves a reminder that WE ARE HIS! We use constantly be looking for ways in which the Spirit can lead us. Just another way to say: the solar system doesn’t revolve around you. I know we will say that with our mouths… but how are you living?
Thank You Lord for using someone like me. Thank You for giving us all the opportunity to simply commit ourselves to You and in doing so become a tool for righteousness! You give us purpose and usefulness!! Thank You so much for investing in me. Help me to remain committed to You and Your mission. Help me to realize the moments I am living as the world revolves around me. Amen.
Pray for the Spirit to guide you into something new today. There’s an entire day ahead of you – either the rest of today or tomorrow if the Lord doesn’t come! If you haven’t started praying for God to guide your day to day life I encourage you to start now. It may seem odd at first, but keep pushing. God has called us to be ambassadors so it should not be outlandish to ask Him to tell us what to do. If you hear nothing… maybe you’re still not being obedient in his previous commands and He wants you to listen to those first! He has called us to share the Gospel with any and all we see, so start investing in people’s life. Get to know people so that you can love them BY sharing the Gospel one day. If you feel you have no direction from the Lord THAT was the last thing He called us to do. So be obedient, and pray for further clarification in the process! 🙂 Talk to you tomorrow! ^.^