May 27, 2010

Joy Under Stress

Acts 26:19-29

“Short time or long—I pray to God that … all who are listening … may become what I am …”
Acts 26:29


Paul’s message to King Agrippa is his own personal testimony about his meeting with Jesus. In a brief moment on the Damascus road, Paul’s life was turned around. God transformed him from a persecutor of the church to a missionary to the Gentiles. But Paul’s argument isn’t based only on personal experience. He understood that the mission of Jesus was also foretold by the united witness of the Old Testament prophets.

Hearing Paul’s message, King Agrippa challenged Paul with a simple, direct question: “Do you think that in such a short time you can persuade me to be a Christian?” Agrippa was really sidestepping Paul’s argument. If Agrippa believed the prophets and the prophets pointed to Christ, then Agrippa had no choice but to face the fact that Jesus was the long-awaited Messiah.

What about you? If you are a seeker of truth, I pray that Paul’s words will lead you to Jesus. If you think you have the truth but it is not in Jesus, I pray that you will soon see him as your Savior. If you profess to be a Christian but your life is far from God’s expectations, use this time to come closer to him.

We do not have the luxury of postponing our spiritual quest for God. Life is too short to postpone cultivating a conscientious, committed connection to Christ. That relationship is our greatest joy!

Dear God, create in me the desire to draw near to you. Whatever my circumstances, whatever my excuses, send the Holy Spirit into my heart to live for you. Amen.

About the author — Jack Gray

Jack Gray recently retired after forty years as a pastor in the Christian Reformed Church. During that time he served seven churches from coast to coast in the United States. He and his wife, Wanda, have four sons and three grandchildren. They also have ministered to 44 foster children. This month’s devotions are inspired by his reflections on time at this transition in his life.

Start your day with quick daily devotions.

See God's love, power, presence, and purpose in your life every day!