Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Steps and Stops

Where were you when you first heard the gospel?

A camp meeting?
A church service?
A long flight and a kind seat mate?

Were you anywhere west of Asia?

If so, you have the providential hand of God in directing the steps of the first missionaries to be grateful to.

The first person to hear the Gospel west of Asia was Lydia, the first convert to Christianity in Europe.

Lydia was actually from Asia.

Even more ironically, the people who shared the gospel with her were missionaries who planned to go to Asia, but the Lord led them to Europe instead.

Sometimes closed doors don’t make sense.
Often the wide open ones don’t either.

For these missionaries, both the closed and open doors left them wondering.

But they obeyed.

And they met a group of women in Europe whose hearts were already prepared to receive the truth.

Lydia was among them and came to Christ.
Next, her household believed.
A slave girl was delivered from demon possession.
Then, a jailer was transformed.
His household believed.

And a church began in Philippi.

From there, the Gospel continued to spread West.
Now, it has gone all the way around the world.

God directs our steps . . . and our “stops,” someone once said.

If you heard the Gospel somewhere West of Asia, you have the "steps and stops” of God to be grateful to.

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We can never determine all the why’s of God’s leading. 
But we know this . . . His own, silent answer to our why’s have a greater meaning than we could ever comprehend.  A deeper and more loving meaning than we could ever determine for ourselves.

Steps and Stops of life are God’s prerogative.

Obedience and trust are ours.


(Click here to listen to "Lydia and the Women of Philippi")

4 comments:

  1. Thanks, Kim. Thanks, too, for helping me grasp this concept. =)

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  2. "God directs our stops." This is a unique thought and appropriate for the times we must rest with chronic illness. Thank you for sharing. I will tuck that phrase away.

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    1. Thanks for your comment, Jennifer. Yes, those "stops" sometimes come more frequently than we like. I like the way you put it, though: "REST with chronic illness." What a privilege that actually is! Hope you're feeling okay this week!

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