Powered by 4 - October 17, 2016

Encouraging God

Today's reading: Acts 18:1-17

I've found that when I read historical accounts, too often my tendency is to take in the facts and not necessarily spend time pondering the actual experience being relayed. So today, I tried to put myself in Paul’s shoes and get a better sense of how he was living and what he was experiencing. (How did it feel to arrive in Corinth not knowing anyone? What was it like to meet and then live with Aquila and Priscilla? How did he feel and then manage going into the synagogue knowing that he was going to hit intense opposition and challenges?)

Paul's life was not an easy one, and what stood out to me as I thought about his experience in Corinth was how God provided for Paul in the area of encouragement. When Paul arrives alone in Corinth, God connects him with Aquila and Priscilla. Paul needs a place to stay, Aquila and Priscilla open their home to him. Despite intense opposition to his preaching, many believed and God encourages and reinforces Paul through a vision, letting him know that he's doing exactly what God wants and that God will protect him. And when the Jews attack Paul and bring him before Gallio, God protects Paul just as He had promised. What a picture of an encouraging and trustworthy God!

Think back over the past month or two. What are some examples of how has God encouraged you? Be specific and don't limit yourself to things that you consider "big" encouragements. Think broadly because God is in every detail. (Has someone paid for your drink in a drive thru? Did someone from church unexpectedly check in just to ask how you were doing? You get the idea. ) Tami

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