“But there is another urgency before me now. I feel compelled to go to Jerusalem. I’m completely in the dark about what will happen when I get there. I do know that it won’t be any picnic, for the Holy Spirit has let me know repeatedly and clearly that there are hard times and imprisonment ahead. But that matters little. What matters most to me is to finish what God started: the job the Master Jesus gave me of letting everyone I meet know all about this incredibly extravagant generosity of God.” Acts 20:22-24 Message
Your assignment that Jesus gave you when you first accepted Him as Lord of your life, was never meant to be easy, comfortable or all roses and sunshine. It was never meant to do alone or without direction and instruction. It was meant to be done with constant conversation with the Holy Spirit as He has promised to give strategy and counsel.
Paul understood that the success and completion of his ministry would only be done well by knowing those things. He mentioned an urgency and feeling compelled to go, those are all signs the Holy Spirit is directing. Faith is having the confidence in that voice, to respond and go even before you know what the outcome will be. Paul said, “I do know that it won’t be any picnic, for the Holy Spirit has let me know repeatedly and clearly that there are hard times and imprisonment ahead. But that matters little.”
Why did that matter so little to him? Because the reward was letting everyone know all about the incredible, extravagant generosity of God. I believe that that knowledge of Gods character was the driving force behind Pauls ability to complete his mission.
You see, when you discover something that will benefit others, you just want to share. It could be a deal at the grocery store, a gas station that’s selling gas for less, a bank that’s offering lower interest on a loan or a doctor that has discovered a formula for weight loss, you know full well that you wouldn’t keep that to yourself. Neither would you keep back from others the joy of discovering peace in a storm or health to all their flesh.
Whoever tried to gain converts by telling them their life would be perfect if only they would give it to Jesus, told a baldfaced lie. Running a race is hard. Climbing a mountain is hard. If you’re not up for a challenge, don’t commit to Jesus! It’s about relationship with the One who holds all the answers. It’s about knowing and having access to everything you need for life and godliness. It’s about holding in your hands the key that opens opportunities and even though risk is involved.
That’s the life I live. Paul said it perfectly to the Galatians (2:19-21):
What actually took place is this: I tried keeping rules and working my head off to please God, and it didn’t work. So I quit being a “law man” so that I could be God’s man. Christ’s life showed me how, and enabled me to do it. I identified myself completely with him. Indeed, I have been crucified with Christ. My ego is no longer central. It is no longer important that I appear righteous before you or have your good opinion, and I am no longer driven to impress God. Christ lives in me. The life you see me living is not “mine,” but it is lived by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. I am not going to go back on that.
21 Is it not clear to you that to go back to that old rule-keeping, peer-pleasing religion would be an abandonment of everything personal and free in my relationship with God? I refuse to do that, to repudiate God’s grace. If a living relationship with God could come by rule-keeping, then Christ died unnecessarily.
Today I will place my hand in His and climb the mountain once again. Each time I do, I condition my body until soon, I will climb without hesitancy at all. My spiritual muscles will come alive to take this journey again and again. I will not grow weary in telling others of the incredibly extravagant generosity of God.
Until Next Time,