From Paphos, Paul and his companions sailed to Perga in Pamphylia, where John left them to return to Jerusalem. From Perga they went on to Pisidian Antioch. On the Sabbath they entered the synagogue and sat down. After the reading from the Law and the Prophets, the leaders of the synagogue sent word to them, saying, “Brothers, if you have a word of exhortation for the people, please speak.”
– Acts 13:13-15
Paul and his companions had long and arduous journeys sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ. My children and I have just returned home from our long road trip. We left June 19 and returned July 13. After traveling through 10 states, seeing four national parks, reading books, hiking trails, journaling, and enjoying time with family and friends, we were tired from traveling. It’s good to be home. Being on the road has the benefit of new sights and new people to encounter. Being home gives you space within the familiar.
Upon returning home, I am noticing the landscape around us more. I’m looking at people with fresh, inquisitive eyes. I have a desire to ask more questions and dig deeper into relationships with both strangers and friends. The word of exhortation that God has given me through this time away is that there is life and opportunity wherever God places us. We sometimes need to shift and adapt to changing circumstances. We were limited in our trip to Glacier and Yellowstone National Parks because of flooding problems. But we still managed to experience the power and majesty of God’s creation… It just takes some adaptations.
Adapting our expectations as well as adapting plans to the shifting circumstances is never easy. How is God calling us to adapt to our current situation as individuals and as a church? Where is God calling us to focus our time and attention in order to further the life-giving message of Jesus Christ? Is God calling you to serve in a new way, to explore a new passion, a developing spiritual gift, or adapt to a new need within the community? Lean in to that opportunity. The benefits of adapting are not only survival, but an opportunity to thrive in a surprising new place.
I would love to visit with you one-on-one to explore where God is calling you to minister. Please email or call me and we can make time to listen and pray together.
By your Holy Spirit, feed our faith in Jesus so that we grow stronger in our loving concern for other people. Strengthen our faith so that Christ may live in us, so that we may live to please you, rather than try to please the world, and so that our priorities are yours, and not the greedy and selfish priorities of our society. We marvel at how your Spirit takes Jesus to the outsiders. May we welcome them as one with us. Lovingly wash us all clean and sow the risen Christ like a new seed, to sprout and grow in our lives. Amen.