The adventures continue!
Yesterday our reading finished at Acts 20, with an emotional goodbye between Paul and the church leaders in Ephesus. In the following chapters Paul heads back to Jerusalem, where he causes a riot amongst the Jews and is arrested by Roman soldiers who are trying to keep the peace. He hears of a conspiracy to kill him, which then leads to him being transferred via 200 soldier detachment to Caesarea to go on trial before the Roman Governor Felix. Our reading today picks up in Acts 25, when Felix is replaced by the Governor Festus.
Festus knows that Paul is innocent and wants him to go back to Jerusalem for a trial, but Paul, knowing that he wouldn’t get a fair trial there appeals to Caesar, which was a gutsy thing to do! We then read over the next few chapters of his amazing journey to Rome via boat, and how God saved him and everyone with him along the way.
Paul used every opportunity
What stood out to me today was that wherever Paul was, he reached out to people around him and tried with all his effort to encourage them to turn to God. Whether it was a king, fellow prisoners, sailors, Roman soldiers, or people he met on an island, Paul made the most out of every opportunity to see God’s kingdom come. There was a lot he couldn’t control in his life- he was effectively on death row- but he had a hope in God and a trust in His plans, which made him make most out of the situations he found himself in.
As I was reading this I was reminded of a word someone had at church on Sunday evening as we were praying before the gathering. They felt that God was saying that as it was snowing and normal life is disrupted we should be looking out for opportunities to reach out to people and show them God’s love. Paul looked out for opportunities and was quick to share his testimony (Acts 26:12). I’m praying for chances today to share what God has done in my life and to have the eyes to see the opportunities He is putting in front of me.