What would it take to get us to stop sharing about what God has done for us through Christ and what He wants to do for every person we come into contact with?
Do we stop talking when we feel awkward?
Do we stop when it is uncomfortable?
Do we quit when we meet resistance?
Would we quit if we were warned we could lose our job?
Would we quit if we were warned we would lose our life?
Would we keep our faith to ourselves if we knew we might lose our family by speaking?
Would we get frustrated and give up if we lost some of our freedom because of the cause of Christ?
What would it take?
As we come to the end of the year and to the end of the book of Acts, I can't help but think back to the overwhelming sense that the first century Christians would stop at absolutely nothing to serve their Lord. They endured beatings and imprisonment. They rejoiced in persecution. They deliberately disobeyed the authorities who tried to silence them because they claimed a higher Authority.
Here at the end of Luke's record of the early church, we see Paul under house arrest in Rome. It's incredible to me that Luke just leaves Paul imprisoned! But I think it speaks volumes that Luke concludes his history of the early church by saying that Paul just simply continued to proclaim the kingdom of God and continued to teach about the Lord Jesus Christ.
That mission was his everything.
It consumed him and it drove every decision he made. It set his purpose in every day. His words, thoughts, and actions all flowed from the one supreme force in his life- the grace of Jesus that he met on the road to Damascus so many years before.
As you look toward the New Year and begin to think of resolutions and plans for the future, I want to challenge you to think of one question. Is there anything in the coming days and in the coming year that will keep you from proclaiming the kingdom of God and teaching someone about the Lord Jesus Christ? Will your circumstances or your family? Will your time constraints or your finances? Will your pride or your selfishness?
If there is anything at all that you can think of that would keep you from proclaiming Him...I want to challenge you to knock that idol down and start 2015 with the passion and the purpose that we read about in the book of Acts.
May we not let anything ever stop us from proclaiming the kingdom that we have been given entrance into. And may that kingdom spread and God be glorified because of it.
Don't forget to post a response to this week's VOW or last week's with your suggestions for future VOWs. I am looking for promises of God from scripture to write about in the coming weeks. I really love researching and writing about things that other people hold dear because it challenges me to grow and study passages that I may not already be familiar with. May God bless you in the coming year!