Let us stay awhile
“From there we travelled to Philippi, a Roman colony and the leading city of that district[ of Macedonia. And we stayed there several days.”
What will cause you to stay? The team stayed ‘there several days’. Why? Let me offer some speculative reasons that may help us in our own mission in life.
- People – in the next several days we will read 3 stories of their time in this city. These people were Lydia, a demon possessed slave girl and a prison guard. They are amazing stories and they kept the team in the city because of what they encountered.
- Place of Influence – Of course the capital in this region was Thessalonica. However, Luke writes of Philippi as the ‘leading city’. That could mean he was simply capturing the view of the people; or maybe it was because of its amazingly famous history of when Caesar Augustus killed Julius Caesar in this city; or perhaps because of its wealth with the gold mines and the springs it had; or was it even because of its diversity containing Greeks, Romans and foreigners who all carried with them their own gods to be worshipped. Of course no one knows whether it was opinion, history, wealth, diversity or a mixture of all four that made the city what it was. But Luke says it was ‘leading’.
- Purpose – They were in Macedonia because of verse 9. Paul had a vision of the call to Macedonia. This was a new chapter for them. They were purposed by God to be there. They had to stay to discover why He wanted them there and then to carry out His will for their lives.
So as I reflect on what I have just written I am spurred on in my own life to organise my mission in this life around those very same 3 speculative reasons: People, the place of influence and the purpose of God.
I want my life to be about the people I encounter and their stories of transformation and to somehow play a part no matter how small to their development.
I want my life to be about being in a place of influence. I want to be able to influence the influencers and to lead the leaders. I truly believe everyone reading this blog if they looked around them would recognise that they themselves are in a place of being able to influence. It is the most exciting opportunity to influence our own children, or a friend perhaps, even our own parents and spouses. But of course the list goes on.
I want my life to be about purpose. To be right on track, focused, determined, heading in the right direction and having a sense of being here for such a time as this.
These are my 3 desires this morning. Are they yours? If so, let us stay awhile and see what God will do!