Saturday, October 9, 2010

NT75 Day 27: Acts 24-28

I'm impressed with the power of testimony.  Between yesterday's reading (ch. 22) and today's (ch. 26, specifically) we get a couple of full accounts and a couple of partial accounts of God's work in Paul's life.

Some people worry that their "testimony," the story of how God has worked and is working in their lives, is boring.  They never smoked pot or stole a Mercedes or threw mannequins stolen from JC Penney off the bridge into late-night traffic.  They grew up in church, they loved their parents, and they never really knew life apart from God's activity in their lives.

First of all, that's the way it's supposed to be.  Parents are supposed to raise their kids in the "fear and instruction" of the Lord.  Kids are supposed to grow up and honor their parents, learning from them what it means to walk with God.  Somewhere along the way, God saves them spectacularly though not "visibly" (as He did with Paul).  The salvation is no less spectacular, no less a raising of a dead person to life, no less of a forgiveness of sin, no less a glorious purchase and ransom of a life.  My friend Brian, who didn't grow up in a family who loved God, got to baptize his daughter the other day.  Her testimony:  "Well, I never really knew life apart from Jesus.  Mom and Dad always made that a part of our home.  Now I want to live for Him."  Brian, through tears, commented how different it was from his own testimony since he came to faith in college.  That's the way it's supposed to be.  I'd say to those with testimonies like this to speak of God's faithfulness!

But second, it's not always that way.  Our lives are wrecks apart from God and the restraining influence of parents and other authorities.  Some have proven that and done so in spades.  To them, I encourage you to speak of life's emptiness and God's willingness to love you and fill you.

Either way, speak up.  The world needs to hear.

But that's just me thinking thoughts...

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