October 26, 2011
Read: Acts 16:9-31
Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them. —Acts 16:25
Have you ever been stuck in an airport? For 24 hours? In a city where you can’t speak the language? Four thousand miles from home?
It happened to a friend recently, and we can learn from his response. While most of us would find such an inconvenience intolerable, my friend John saw God’s hand in his delay. As he waited out his forced stay, he looked for opportunities to connect with fellow passengers. He “happened” to find some fellow Christians from India—and in talking to them he heard about a ministry they were involved with. In fact, because John’s interests matched his new friends’ ministry, they invited him to India to participate in a short-term project.
How often do we experience delays, changes of plans, and redirections and treat them as intrusions? It could be that God is detouring us so we can do something different or new for Him. Consider Paul’s trip to Philippi in Acts 16. He had gone to Macedonia because of a God-directed vision (vv.9-10). How could he know that he would end up in prison there? But even that trip to jail was God-led, because He used Paul to bring salvation to a jailer and his family (vv.25-34).
God can use inconveniences in our lives if we look at them as divine appointments.
Change one letter, then I see
That the thwarting of my purpose
Is God’s better choice for me. —Young
God can turn obstacles into opportunities.