Read Acts 27:1-26
7. Paul’s Voyage and Shipwreck. In the book of Acts Paul, a number of other prisoners and authorities are traveling by ship to Rome. Paul warned the Centurion not to travel in such dangerous weather.
The Centurion went ahead based on the advice of the ship owner. The storm was so terrible that the men lost hope of being saved. Paul calls them to take courage and trust that God would make a way.
- A friend in the time of need. Notice in vs. 3 of this section of the book of Acts that God provide a period of rest and refreshment for Paul. In like manner, as we are faithful to God’s will, God has a way of giving us what we need, right when we need it.
God can provide the hug, the kind word, the extra money, the renewed energy, the supportive relationship, or whatever we stand in need of.
As you look again at the text, notice that Paul spent a little time with friends. In order for this to happen, in our lives, we need to work on having some friends. There are too many in the church who have no Christian supportive friends.
Building relationships start with you taking the initiative and journeying towards a trusted relationship (i.e., commitment, doing what you say, and accountability). Let’s work on trusting God to provide and developing supportive Christian relationships.
- Faith for the storms. Notice in vss. 9-12 that as saved and sent as Paul was he still had some stormy weather to go through. In like manner, our being saved and on a mission for the Lord doesn’t exempt us from troubled times.
Our families, our health, our finances, and our mental well being are all subject to trouble. Instead of thinking that our lives will be storm free, we would be better served by building the faith needed to endure the storms.
Faith building includes prayerful study of God’s word and obedience with the support of other believers. Let’s work on developing faith to endure our storms.
- Doing our part in the group. Notice in vs. 9-12 of the book of Acts that Paul did not have the authority to make the group decision, nor was he able to persuade the one who did have the authority. Does this sound like you?
On one hand, we should do the best we can to respectful share with those in authority what we believe to be God’s will.
On the other hand, there comes a time, when we simply have to trust God to do what is beyond our control. Paul did not cause a mutiny. He simply trusted God to work it out.
An additional point in this area is that if God blesses you to be a leader, work on discerning God’s will, no matter who God sends the message through. Let’s work on doing our parts in the storms faced by the groups that we are in.
- Outside the will of God. Notice in vss. 13-20 that things changed so quickly from good to bad for those outside the will of God. In like manner, there may be times when it seems as if our ways are better for us than God’s ways are for us.
However, down the road and around the corner, we will discover that God really knows what is best for us. God knows things about the future that we are not privileged to. We simply have to trust Him.
An additional point in this area is that we don’t have be jealousy of those who seem to be doing well, even though they are outside the will of God. In the end, God’s way is always best.
That which is not of God, will come to a vain end. Let’s work on trusting God’s will, in spite of how good things seem outside of His will.
- Letting God use us in stormy weather. Notice in vss. 21-26 of the book of Acts that Paul allowed God to use him, even though he was not the official leader. Paul told the people what God said with the realization that he belonged to and served God.
First, since God works in mysterious ways, we should be open to letting God use us, in whatever way He wants to use us. We should not say “no” to God because we are a prisoner or we are not the leader or because you are a woman or because you are too old.
Second, we should always be a witness for the Lord. We should tell people what God has told us to tell them. We must not waste time with expressions of bitterness.
Third, we should remind ourselves that we belong to God and we serve Him. Whether in the calm or the storm, whether in sickness or in health, we belong to God.
God doesn’t disown us. And we ultimately serve Him. God may use humans as foremen or supervisors in His plan, but God is the ultimate chief executive officer.
Therefore, we ought to give our very best. Let’s work on letting God use us, in spite of storms and being previously ignored.
- Trusting God’s timing. Notice in vss. 23-24 that God knows when to show up and He knows what to bring with Him. For Paul, He showed up by way of an angel at night.
He showed up with words of comfort. In like manner, if we simply stay focused, God has a way of showing up at the right time with the right stuff.
Let’s work on staying faithful, even when the storms of life are raging. This is easier said than done, but this should be our goal.
Conclusion: Let’s work on being witnesses for the Lord, everywhere we go. God has much for those who obey His will.
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