Feb 26, 2018
The Christian life can be difficult at times. We can encounter situations and circumstances that make living out our faith more than a bit tricky and trying. And no one knew that better than Paul. Ever since his conversion on the road to Damascus, Paul had experienced a litany of faith-testing difficulties, all the way from verbal assault to stoning. He had been falsely accused, beaten with rods, flogged with a whip, and repeatedly forced to flee for his life. And in Acts 20:13-27, Luke will begin to chronicle Paul’s efforts to make his way to Jerusalem, where he knows suffering awaits him. He had been informed of his fate by the Spirit of God and warned by his friends not to go. But Paul was determined to do what he felt compelled by the Spirit of God to do – in spite of potential suffering and even with the distinct possibility of death looming on the horizon. Paul refused to shrink back from the difficulties of life. He would not run from the commission given to him by Jesus. If death was his lot, he trusted that God knew best. And he did everything in his power to pass on that sense of determination and dedication to obey the will of God, encouraging the elders from Ephesus to follow his example and shepherd those under their care with an eye to their future reward. Things in this life are going to be tough at times. But we are to not to shrink back in fear or give up hope. Like Paul, we are to remain committed to spreading the gospel message, regardless of the circumstances we may face in this life.