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What if God Did That in Me? – April 17, 2024

Wednesday, April 17

Devotional written by Brian Williams, Community Engagement Pastor

 

WHAT IF GOD DID THAT IN ME?

“And because of my chains, most of the brothers and sisters have become confident in the Lord and dare all the more to proclaim the gospel without fear.”
Philippians 1:14

Read 1 Corinthians 11:1

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The testimony and examples of others are powerful agents of inspiration. When I was 20 years old, I went overseas with a mission organization focused on mobilizing the youth for the advancement of the gospel. I remember watching Emmanuel, our team leader and instructor, go about daily activities and lead us into new experiences. More often than not, his life was more of an inspiration to me than his teachings. His joy and ability to remain relational and focused on God and others in some very stressful circumstances, his boldness and spirit of adventure to follow God’s leading into dangerous situations, and his unwavering focus on things above, along with his delight in the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus, are all remarkable qualities. Who he is did more than solicit praise from me; it changed me. His testimony and example opened my eyes to what life could be like and led me to become like him in some of those ways.

Paul’s boldness and joy in preaching the gospel, which put him in these chains, is not diminished because of the chains. God used his example and testimony to inspire and encourage others to live faithfully, fearlessly, and joyfully in service to the gospel like Paul. He wasn’t unique; he was just like them. Redeemed by Jesus, filled with the Holy Spirit, and commissioned unto this joy-filled life of advancing the gospel in any and all circumstances. If he could do it, they could do it, and so can you and I.

Action: Who inspires you? Reflect on the story of their life, their faith, their joy, and their friendship with God. What about their life with God and for God, do you desire to be a part of your life? Ask God for what you see in them and follow their example as you go about your day today.
(Note: Lacking inspiration? May I suggest exploring the stories and writings of some of these people: Elizabeth Elliot, Brother Andrew, Brother Yun, George Muller, Corrie Ten Boom, John Bunyan, Jim Elliot, and Hudson Taylor?)

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