Thursday, September 20, 2012

Comfort Zones

Romans 9:4
Ruth 1:14-17
It might have been much easier for Paul to serve in a Jewish Christian church. Instead by following the leading of the Holy Spirit he traveled throughout the Roman Empire, preaching to his fellow Israelites, who most often rejected his message, leaving him to preach it to Gentiles instead. I'm sure he never imagined growing up that his future life would look as it did. Yet his love for Christ Jesus was so intense that he was willing to abandon his comfort zone "for the sake of the gospel" (1 Cor 9:23). Was his life better off because of it? He seemed to think so.
His choice out of love for Christ is not so different from the choice Ruth made out of love for her mother-in-law. She had no guarantees when she left Moab for Israel. She could have been rejected and abused, especially when her mother-in-law passed away and she was left as a foreign widow with no one to support or encourage her. She left her comfort zone far behind out of concern for Naomi. The rest of her life was definitely better because of her choice.
It is extremely intimidating to leave behind our comfort zones without knowing what the choice will lead to. There are no guarantees that our futures will be better for the sacrificial choice we've made. Yet when we follow the Lord's leadership, we can trust that they will be. Or at least that someday they will be. The remainder of our earthly life might not be enjoyable (who knows: perhaps it will be!) but at least we know our eternal life will improve. What comfort zones has God asked you to leave behind? What were the results? Are you glad today that you followed His leadership or do you wish today that you had? What comfort zones are you in right now that the Lord is asking you to leave behind?

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