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Living Ready

Paul lived ready to die.

Paul was preparing to return to Jerusalem, and his friends knew this meant certain imprisonment or death for him. They looked up to Paul. They respected him. They’d follow him wherever he goes. This time, however, they were begging him to stay away from Jerusalem. Paul’s reply: "I am ready not only to be imprisoned but even to die for the name of the Lord Jesus.”

“For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain” (Philippians 1:21). He knew that his life was fully dedicated to glorifying Jesus and spreading His name. Paul’s influence over his friends was powerful. Paul’s commitment to the calling the Lord had given him changed the hearts of his friends, and they quit begging him to stay behind and simply stated: “Let the will of the Lord be done.”

Acts 21:15 says, “After these days, we got ready and went up to Jerusalem.” Paul’s obedience not only changed the minds of his friends, but it challenged them to follow the will of the Lord in their own lives, and they all traveled to Jerusalem together.

At NewSpring Church, we say “you can’t do life alone” often. It is my prayer that we would never forget what that means.

Our influence extends far beyond what we can see. When we are obedient to the Lord’s calling, we cast an example to others. Like Paul, we have no way of predicting the response to our obedience. Paul only knew that the Lord had called him to go, and in his mind, there was no other choice. The community that he had built with other believers was so challenged by his decision that they said, “Well, we’re coming with you!”

Reflect:

  • What if we, like Paul, were filled with joy to say ‘yes’ to the will of the Lord and ‘no’ to our own desires?
  • What if we lived ready to die? How would our influence affect our friends to walk in obedience as well?

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