After everything settles down in Ephesus, Paul heads northwest into Greece and down the peninsula, visiting and encouraging all the churches he had previously planted. He was about to sail to Syria when he caught wind of a plot to take his life. The change in plans brought him back the way he came.
In Troas (west coast of modern Turkey) Paul spends a lot of time teaching the disciples. As midnight rolls around a guy falls asleep (during a sermon? Never!) and plummets from the third story window to his death. But God uses Paul to raise him back to life. And then Paul, without getting the hint, continues to teach until midnight. Bro was long-winded!
Paul continued on to Miletus (also on the west coast of Turkey) and met with the leadership from the Ephesian church. Did you catch what Paul confessed to them? He said he was going to Jerusalem and he was not sure what to expect. He could only assume more of what he received in every city, which was persecution, opposition and imprisonment. Then he said the following: “However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me -- the task of testifying to the gospel of God’s grace.” Wow, bro was intense!
Do you think you could be as bold and determined as Paul? Can you say that you consider your life worth nothing if you don’t finish the task that God has given you? What task has God given you? Even though we may not live on the west coast of Turkey, God still has a purpose for each of our lives and wants to help us make the most of them. Ask God to show you what he wants you to do with your life. Paul asked, and bro was given a purpose!
- Written for Verve by Mike Zimmerman