For I long to see you so that I may impart some spiritual gift to you, that you may be established; that is, that I may be encouraged together with you while among you, each of us by the other’s faith, both yours and mine. I do not want you to be unaware, brethren, that often I have planned to come to you (and have been prevented so far) so that I may obtain some fruit among you also, even as among the rest of the Gentiles.
Sometimes God says “No”!
We don’t like it when our plans are frustrated. Paul had planned to go and visit the Christians in Rome “often”, but it was not God’s will for Paul and so He “prevented” him.
Paul’s reasons for planning to go were good reasons. He wanted to have ministry there and lead people to Christ. He wasn’t being selfish. But still God’s answer was “No.” Be very careful to trust in God’s wisdom and timing. In seeking God’s will you must have the conviction that God’s ways are best.
Eventually God did send Paul to Rome, but not like Paul had planned or expected. He went in chains as a prisoner of Rome. And God used his imprisonment to spread the gospel throughout the entire Roman guard. What abundant “fruit”!
God wants you to trust Him, even when His answer is “No” or “Not yet”.
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