Aches and Praise Five Hundred & Fifty Six

May 6, 2022
 
 
Dear friends,  
 

If you were a young adult in the 1970s, you may have heard the song “Pass It On” by Kurt Kaiser. You can see the lyrics and listen to an instrumental version of the song at: https://lyricstranslate.com/en/kurt-kaiser-pass-it-lyrics.html. The verse about the spring came to my mind this morning, as I thought about how many people are suffering from seasonal allergies as pollen flies all over the place. Karen has been having a very difficult week with her reaction to pollen and would appreciate your prayers.

On Tuesday, we looked at Acts 19 and 20 in our weekly Bible study group on Zoom. It is encouraging to read how the Lord led the apostle Paul. In Acts 19:8, we read “And he went into the synagogue and spoke boldly for three months, reasoning and persuading concerning the things of the kingdom of God.” In the next verse, we learn that “some were hardened and did not believe, but spoke evil of the Way…” Paul persisted in the face of opposition, staying in Ephesus for three years. He taught God’s Word daily, “so that all who dwelt in Asia heard the word of the Lord Jesus, both Jews and Greeks” (v. 10).

The Word of God is powerful and leads people to turn from sin to following the Lord and seeking to do His will. In Acts 19:18-20 we read that “many who had believed came confessing and telling their deeds. Also, many of those who had practiced magic brought their books together and burned them in the sight of all … So the word of the Lord grew mightily and prevailed.”

In his Study Bible, Dr. David Jeremiah notes: “The apostle Paul was a great leader by any standards, but especially by God’s standards. By looking at a snapshot of Paul’s life, we can discern nine traits that make leaders great – and godly.

Great leaders:

  1. Have a heart for ministry (Acts 20:1-2)
  2. Have a spirit of tenacity (20:3-6)
  3. Are filled with energy (20:7-13)
  4. Live lives of integrity (20:16)
  5. Are marked with humility (20:18-20)
  6. Speak honestly (20:26-31)
  7. Are men under authority (20:31-32)
  8. Are given to generosity (20:33-35)
  9. Are followed passionately (20:36-38)”

 

May we determine to serve the Lord with all the strength that He gives us.
 

Scripture for the weekend: “But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.” Acts 20:24 (NKJV)

Thought for the weekend: “Paul saw himself as an accountant (Acts 20:24) who had examined his assets and liabilities and decided to put Jesus Christ ahead of everything else. He had faced this kind of reckoning early in his ministry and had willingly made the spiritual the number one priority in his life (Phil. 2:1-11).

He also saw himself as a runner who wanted to finish his course in joyful victory (Phil. 3:12-14; 2 Tim. 4:8). The three phrases ‘my life, my course, the ministry’ are the key. Paul realized that his life was God’s gift to him, and that God had a special plan for his life that would be fulfilled in his ministry. Paul was devoted to a great Person (‘serving the Lord’) and motivated by a great purpose, the building of the church.” – Warren W. Wiersbe (from “The Wiersbe Bible Commentary”)

 
By His grace,                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          
Steve


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