May 20 – Acts 22
Have you ever heard that saying “want to make God laugh, tell Him your plans”? Well, I just love Paul, always so willing; I can relate to him – even in his extremes. I can’t discount that he discerns the Spirit and is obedient in His will, but he definitely seems to make more work for himself.
READ: Acts 22
Acts 22:4 – …I was just as zealous for God as any of you are today. I persecuted the followers of this Way to their death, arresting both men and women and throwing them into prison…
Acts 22:19 – “Lord,” I replied, “these people know that I went from one synagogue to another to imprison and beat those who believe in you.”
In verse 4, we see Paul was very eager to obey God, hence him persecuting Christians. He took it onto his own accord how God would have had him go about things. His biblical lenses were just a little blurred, but Jesus opened his eyes to a clearer way of seeing.
And now in verse 19, Paul seemed to be arguing with Jesus about leaving Jerusalem. He didn’t want to leave; he thought that if he told the Jews all of this and how God had changed him, they’d listen. He was eager to tell them, because he had changed so much and knew only God could change a person like this. Before, Paul had persecuted Christians. Now, he believed because he had spoken to Jesus himself. Again, Jesus told him to go to the Gentiles, that the Jews would not believe what he had to say.
There is no denying the love Paul had for God – he was willing to kill for and on the flip now stay in a place where he was likely to be killed.
There is no doubt, I, like Paul, have gotten it wrong. I’ve been an eager beaver defending, when I know my facts were skewed. I’ve also taken more than One path at a time thinking I can do this, because it’s the “right thing” or “right time”.
There’s always an urgency both with preaching the good news and life in general. Urgency is good, but I tend to keep too many fires burning, sometimes unnecessary fires. Just when I think I have it all planned out or fires put out, You come along and show me differently.
Let this willing soul work smarter not harder.
Father, You know I am willing, sometimes too willing especially on unnecessary things. I’ve prayed before about prioritization; I’m still praying for that. I know I get it wrong; would You help me get it right? I want to glorify You, not make You shake Your head. I need You; I want to focus on only You and Your will. Help me stay still and not so eager on those not so necessary things. In Your guiding name…Amen.