Acts 27:13-26 – Stormy Seas

Read Acts 27:13-16

We have all had “I told you so”  moments in our lives. I’m sure one, in particular, sped through your mind as you read today’s reading. I know one did for me. However, Paul’s message was not to condemn but to comfort. Again, Paul’s integrity and leadership shine through the darkness of the moment.

When we are going through the storms of life, it is sometimes hard to focus on anything good. When we are lost in the moment of despair, there is nothing anyone can say that is going to lift us up. I wonder how it was for Paul’s shipmates. They had been frantically doing things to keep themselves safe–as if they had control.  Continue reading “Acts 27:13-26 – Stormy Seas”

Acts 27:1-12 – When You’re Not Being Heard

Read Acts 27:1-12

Paul is on his way to Italy. At last. It was several chapters ago (and years ago) that Jesus told him he was going to Rome.  From the sounds of it, they waited a little too long into the season. I’m not a nautical genius, but if there were treacherous waters ahead, I’m not sure I would venture out. In Paul’s day, it’s hard to know what sort of predictions existed. The Weather Channel was certainly not available.

Paul sensed impending doom and tried to reason with them. I bet he felt invisible. Maybe you’ve felt like this before. Have you had a really great idea, been eager to share it, and then nobody listens? Or even worse, you have gone to the trouble of preparing a great presentation and either get bumped or time runs out before you can present. Then there are the times that you do share, but due to distractions nobody even hears you!  Continue reading “Acts 27:1-12 – When You’re Not Being Heard”

Acts 25:23-26:32 – A New Audience

Read Acts 25:23-26:32

Festus was at his wit’s end at what to do with Paul. We know Paul has appealed to Caesar. Talk about going to the top for justice! But we all know Paul is not guilty of any crime punishable by Roman law. Festus knows this and wants to get the King’s input on what he should tell the emperor. If nothing else, he wants to save face and not look ridiculous for bothering the emperor himself with matters that should have been handled “in the field.”

I don’t know about you, but I love when Paul tells his story. He is so respectful to those in his presence. He is totally devoted to his mission. It’s so clear he truly wants everyone to believe as he does. I love that we all have the opportunity to receive forgiveness and be accepted into God’s family because of our faith and belief in Jesus. Continue reading “Acts 25:23-26:32 – A New Audience”

Acts 25:1-22 – Holding Grudges

Read Acts 25:1-22

You would think the Jewish leaders in Jerusalem would forget about Paul. It’s been two years, and their anger burns on. Meanwhile, Paul has been an innocent man in prison. I thought of how this scenario is much like us holding on to grudges.

Have you ever had someone mad at you to the point where you weren’t speaking? Or maybe you were put out with someone and wanted nothing to do with them. I think we have all experienced that to some degree in our lives. It’s not healthy. We’re seeing the Jewish leaders holding on to this false notion about Paul. They think they know what Paul’s intentions are for the Jewish people. This is a great example of how grudges are often based on something other than true reality.  Continue reading “Acts 25:1-22 – Holding Grudges”

Acts 24:1-27 – You Are Loved – Talk About It

Read Acts 24:1-27

Two years! What a long time to be in prison. Although it sounds like Paul has it pretty nice for being in jail. At least he is safe from his accusers. And, like Paul always does, he is not wasting an opportunity to witness and share with Felix and his wife. I wouldn’t expect any less.

I don’t think I can say that I’ve been that transparent in my life. I have certainly never been in jail or suffered to any extent for my faith. Have I lost friends or gotten people angry with me? Probably. But there are other times I just avoided the faith conversation due to lack of time or feeling inferior at the moment. Continue reading “Acts 24:1-27 – You Are Loved – Talk About It”