Wednesday, April 13, 2016
“But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God” (Acts 20:24 KJV).
Life is filled with extremes. Grace fills us with stability.
Having just attended a Christian wedding, I will soon attend a Christian funeral. Joy and excitement one week—trouble and grief the next! Such is the “roller coaster” we call “life.” Saints, if we lived our lives based strictly on our emotions, we will have one *wild* ride… and eventually, “fall off!” However, if we have a steady (daily) intake of sound Bible doctrine, believing it, reckoning it as true, that will run our lives and bring emotional stability. While our circumstances can and will change, the Holy Spirit will always be supporting us internally.
Notice how our apostle conducted his life and ministry. In today’s Scripture, Paul gave some farewell advice to the Ephesian church elders (beginning in verse 18). He had spent approximately 30 years suffering for Jesus Christ: “And now, behold, I go bound in the spirit to Jerusalem, not knowing the things that shall befall me there: Save that the Holy Ghost witnesseth in every city, saying that bonds and afflictions abide me” (verses 22,23). Day in and day out, Paul experienced extremes. He had the joy of seeing pagans come to Jesus Christ. He had heartache of seeing deceived Christians troubled. He worried about the angry mobs determined to imprison and kill him.
Paul did not know what would soon happen to him when he arrived in Jerusalem. Still, despite all the troubles, he said, “none of these things move me” (today’s Scripture). He knew that, no matter his circumstances, even if it meant being put to death, he had a divine obligation—to preach the Gospel of the Grace of God. That same grace he was preaching had carried him through all those circumstances, good and bad. He was determined to continue with the Gospel “with joy.” Right up until the day the Lord called him Home, he did just that. Likewise, may we rely on God’s grace to stabilize us! 🙂