Sunday, February 9, 2014
Acts 16:9 During the night Paul had a vision: there stood a man of Macedonia pleading with him and saying, “Come over to Macedonia and help us.”
Paul is on his missionary journey and the doors keep closing. He’s been ministering in Asia and seeking God’s leading for his on-going ministry. There were a number of times in his life that God spoke to Paul by way of a vision and this was no different. Sometimes closed doors are a way of God leading, and that culminated in the vision of the man from Macedonia. This would be a major step for Christianity as it would bring the gospel to Europe. The call was not one from Imperial leadership, but a call of desperation, the call of a people who needed help! It was the divine direction that Paul needed and so he crossed over into a new continent and in doing so ushered in a new era in Christianity.
There are critical moments in life when we seek God’s divine direction. Paul was a man of prayer who had become accustomed to seeking God’s leading in all things. If we are to seek divine direction, then seeking the face of God should become a habit in our lives. Then, when we receive a vision or a dream, we will know whether it is from God! In this case, Paul was sure that God was giving him direction and he acted on that vision.
When we are confident that the direction given to us is from God, then we must act. I’m afraid that too often we are not confident in our relationship with the Lord and therefore we do not jump in and act on his leading. Moving on to Macedonia had huge implications for Paul. He was getting further and further away from home and deeper into Roman territory. This held a number of unknowns and yet, Paul was confident of the divine direction and he moved forward in the leading of the Lord.
The result of Paul’s action is still being felt today. Europe became the center of Christianity for many centuries and it was from there that missionary work spread throughout the entire world. What would have happened had Paul not been obedient to the vision and leading of the Lord? When we receive the cry for help, we are to respond and move in the power and presence of the Holy Spirit. When there is divine direction and leading in our lives, God will go with us and help us make a difference for him.
Looking for divine direction? Get to know God, and then trust him with his leading.
Lord, may I follow you today and every day. Amen.