Scripture: Acts 8:1 That day (the day Stephen was killed) a severe persecution began against the church in Jerusalem, and all except the apostles were scattered throughout the countryside of Judea and Samaria. 2 Devout men buried Stephen and made loud lamentation over him. 3 But Saul was ravaging the church by entering house after house; dragging off both men and women, he committed them to prison. 4 Now those who were scattered went from place to place, proclaiming the word.
Observation: A prominent Pharisee named Saul, mentioned in v.3 as a vicious persecutor of the early church, would later become the apostle Paul – one of the great Christian apostles of the New Testament. Talk about ironic. You can’t make this stuff up!
Application: A wise person once said, “Life’s what happens while you’re making other plans.” Isn’t that the truth! Did you imagine 10-20 years ago you’d be who you are now, doing what you’re doing now? Me neither. I’m not complaining, mind you, I’m just making an observation. Life is so unpredictable.
I’ve often imagined retiring in the area north of Austin, Texas – to be closer to family members, whom I visited over Christmas. I even chatted with a relative of mine about buying some property there, then building a retirement house on it. On one hand, these kinds of plans seem prudent and reasonable. I’m only 50 years old now, but retirement will arrive before you know it. Don’t want to wait until the last minute to make plans for it.
On the other hand, that’s like 15-20 years in the future. Who am I kidding?! Anything can happen between now and then. And probably will. Honestly, I’m not sure what to think about this or, perhaps more importantly, what to do about this. If you have some ideas, leave a comment.
Prayer: Lord, making plans for a distant future seems both prudent and foolish at the same time. Help me figure this out. Amen.