Becoming a disciple: Resting for the next assignment

Scripture – Acts 24:27

When two years had passed, Felix was succeeded by Porcius Festus, but because Felix wanted to grant a favor to the Jews, he left Paul in prison.

Observation

God works in miraculous ways!

A few chapters back, in Acts 19, ‘Paul decided to go to Jerusalem, passing through Macedonia and Achaia. “After I have been there,” he said, “I must visit Rome also.”’

So Paul’s itinerary was Ephesus – Macedonia and Achaia – Jerusalem – Rome.

God always has specifics in mind 🙂 He had a very specific way to get Paul taken safely to Rome and to a place where he would have an audience with Caesar, the most powerful man in the known world.

God also is faithful to take care of us. After years of traveling, preaching, making tents, and planting churches, Paul was gifted TWO YEARS in Herod’s palace and was allowed to have his friends come and go, taking care of him.

I can imagine this period as the time that he was able to spend some amazing quality time with Jesus. He was going to face death in Rome but he was also going to write about two-thirds of the New Testament.

Application

There is a plan for our lives. God even often reveals to us some of the itinerary. But God is the one who is all-knowing, all-wise, all-powerful, and he likes to keep the specific details to himself and have us trust him. That’s why it’s called faith.

Paul could have easily become frustrated with God during his two years in Herod’s Palace under house arrest. He could have thought: “God, why are you wasting time with me stuck in here when I could be out spreading the Gospel and planting churches? Did I do something wrong? I know how easy it is for you to get me out of here, so why am I still in here when I could be serving you in the world?”

He didn’t. The alone time with God was a time of rest and preparation for the next assignment.

Are any of us in a time of rest and preparation for the next assignment? Are we tempted to get frustrated with God? Let us take stock of the ways God has already used us and give him thanks for that. If God is giving us a season of recuperation, let us take advantage of it and grow in greater intimacy with him.

We never know how long the preparation may take or what the next assignment may be.

Life in Jesus and led by the Holy Spirit is the most exciting journey we could ever embark on. Trust God, enjoy the preparation and be excited about the next assignment.

Prayer

Jesus, I am struck in this passage how you took care to prepare Paul for his next assignment. My life is in your hands and I am thankful that you care more about my life than I ever could. I want to know you better than anyone else on the planet. Help me hear your voice today. In your name, amen.

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