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Seize the Day!

Daily Reading: Acts 26

Scripture Focus: But rise and stand upon your feet, for I have appeared to you for this purpose, to appoint you as a servant and witness to the things in which you have seen me and to those in which I will appear to you, delivering you from your people and from the Gentiles—to whom I am sending you to open their eyes, so that they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me. (Acts 26.16-17)

Devotional Thought: When you read the book of Acts, you get the sense that Paul was a man with a mission. He was driven by the love of Christ. In his testimony before King Agrippa, we get a glimpse of "God's purpose for Paul" (Beacon Bible Commentary). It was...

  • Active. Although Paul was a deep thinker, God did not call Paul to a life of quiet contemplation. At the outset he made this clear with action words: "Rise... Stand on your feet... I appoint you as a servant..." Even when he was in situations of forced inactivity, he was busy fulfilling God's purpose, writing letters to individuals and churches, letters that captured much of the New Testament's theology and Christian practice.

  • Progressive: Like Abraham before him, God's purpose for Paul was constantly unfolding. God told him he would be "witness to the things... in which I will appear to you." There was always something more for Paul to learn. He did not have a final picture when he set out, but instead he had a faithful Partner.

  • Effective: God did not call Paul simply to go through the motions. His was not a ceremonial function, but a practical function. God worked through Paul to get results: people with opened eyes, turning from darkness to light, turning from Satan's power to God's power, receiving forgiveness of sins and sanctifying grace. And, the record is clear. Paul's work resulted in people saved, churches planted, pastors trained, and lives changed.

As you think about God's purpose for you, remember it is active, progressive, and effective. Then go, seize the day!

Prayer: Lord, I consecrate myself to your purpose. Reveal your will to me and enable me to follow it. Fill me with your Spirit and with power to the glory of your name and the completion of your will. Amen.

Psalm of the Day: 1 In Judah God is known; his name is great in Israel. 2 His abode has been established in Salem, his dwelling place in Zion. 3 There he broke the flashing arrows, the shield, the sword, and the weapons of war. Selah 4 Glorious are you, more majestic than the mountains of prey. 5 The stouthearted were stripped of their spoil; they sank into sleep; all the men of war were unable to use their hands. 6 At your rebuke, O God of Jacob, both rider and horse lay stunned. 7 But you, you are to be feared! Who can stand before you when once your anger is roused? (Psalms 76:1-7)

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