November 24th, 2017 — DEVOTE

Will Rogers has been quoted as saying, “I never met a man I didn’t like.” But I wonder if every man liked him? I’ve never met Will Rogers, and from the little I’ve read about him, he seems like a likeable guy, but knowing the world around me, I’m pretty sure there was someone who didn’t like him in return. Here’s the key though… evidently, it never stopped Will Rogers from liking people.

I thought of him today as I read Acts 13. In this chapter the disciples are all together having a worship service when the Holy Spirit gave them the directions to commission Paul and Barnabas to spread the Good News of Jesus. How the Holy Spirit did that, I don’t know. But I do know that He did and everyone present believed the word and they all laid their hands on these two guys and sent them on their way.

These two traveled all over the place and each place they arrived to, they faced some opposition from some and approval from others. There were some who liked them and others who didn’t. But it never stopped these two. They kept moving forward… pressing on with a purpose. They showed up, stood up and spoke up.

Read some of the opposing verses…
“The next Sabbath almost everyone in town came to hear the message about the Lord. When the Jewish people saw the crowds, they were jealous. They insulted Paul and spoke against everything he said.” Acts 13:44-45 CEV

And again…
But the Jewish leaders went to some of the important men in the town and to some respected women who were religious. They turned them against Paul and Barnabas and started making trouble for them.” Acts 13:50 CEV

How discouraging would that be? All you want to do is share the greatest joy you’ve ever experienced, the love of Jesus, and some of the people who are hearing it are just downright mean.

But here’s the clencher…
“Paul and Barnabas shook the dust from that place off their feet and went…” Acts 13:51 CEV

Here’s my word of encouragement for you today: Don’t stop what you’ve been saved to do. God didn’t save you so that you could keep it all to yourself. He saved you with purpose and design. He saved you to be light for a dark world. He saved you to be salt to a tasteless world. He saved you to show up, stand up and speak up… even if there are people who don’t want to hear it. Just keep pressing forward. There will always be those who will oppose you. Don’t focus on them. Focus on those whose lives are changed through the working of the Holy Spirit and love of Jesus. So just put a smile on your face and show up… stand up… and speak up.

Help me to fulfill the call You have on my life. I want to let my little light shine for You. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.

Rev. Dr. MM Marxhausen