Monday, July 14, 2014

Bible Study: Changes we would never expect

Romans 15:16
Acts 9:1-16
Whatever the young man Saul planned to become when he grew up, I'm fairly certain he did not expect to be a traveling evangelist for Christ. God's plan for him was different from his own. The Lord caught him by surprise when the time was right and changed his future forever.
We're always making plans for our futures, aren't we? A certain amount of planning is wise; I don't believe God wants us to use His propensity to change things up on us as an excuse to avoid commitments. Yet He sees many things which we do not and adjusts our course in life in ways we would never expect. Two years ago at a June retreat He spoke to both my husband and myself about being open to a radical change in our lives. He didn't tell us what that radical change was. Missionaries? Adoption? An entirely new career? A big move? A new service? We said yes individually and together, then waited to hear further instructions. Neither of us expected the change to be two babies arriving the next two years, preventing us from attending that retreat again. What will the next step be? Only the Lord knows so far. He will reveal it, I know, when the time is right, and give us the grace we need to carry out His will. [I'm willing if it's Your will, Lord, but please don't be offended when I say I hope it's not a third baby next June! Not that I don't appreciate the gifts You've given...] Maybe a larger house; a few years of simply raising our children; some new or deeper friendships.
It's often much easier to appreciate the changes the Lord makes in retrospect. Paul never seemed to regret the change in his life course. He speaks of his role as apostle with full ownership of his mission, not with any nostalgia for the time when he was known as Saul. Perhaps you notice that in your own life as you look back at the things that have taken place instead of what might have been if the Lord had left you to your own resources. Acknowledging and thanking Him for those positive changes can make it easier to welcome any new paths He leads you on in the future. At least, it helps me when I face changes I'm not sure I'm prepared for.

No comments:

Post a Comment