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Devotional - week of June 11, 2006


GOD'S WILL, STRANGE AND FOOLISH? 

 

… in the morning, having risen a long while before daylight, He went out and departed to a solitary place; and there He prayed. … But He said to them, "Let us go into the next towns, that I may preach there also, because for this purpose I have come forth."  Mark 1:35, 38

 

At times God’s leadership seems to be strange and foolish. The day before Jesus prayed this prayer, the entire town of Capernaum gathered around Him. After this prayer, Jesus announced to his disciples that He was leaving Capernaum to preach in other towns. Many would look at Jesus’ action as strange and foolish. But the other towns needed Him and His message, and the Father wanted Him to preach in other towns.

 

Philip, the deacon, went to the city of Samaria to preach. This seems to be a strange thing to do because the Samaritans were not full-blooded Jews. Yet, a great revival broke out. This was the beginning of the spread of the gospel beyond the Jewish world. 

 

God then told Philip to “go toward the south along the road which goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” What a seemingly strange thing for God to say. However, on the road to Gaza, Philip met a man from Ethiopia. He was responsible for the national treasury when Candace was the queen of Ethiopia. Philip led him to the Lord. He obviously took the message of salvation through Jesus to the continent of Africa and into the Gentile world.

 

When we make our lives available to the Lord, we continually look to Him for instructions concerning what we are to do next. He may direct us to do things that seem strange and foolish to us and to others. Yet, because what we believe to be the leading of the Holy Spirit, we do those strange and foolish things.

 

In John 17:4 Jesus prayed to His Father, “I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do.” In light of Jesus’ statement, when we walk in the will of God, we will bring glory to God—even if His leadership seems strange. Only God fully knows what our response to the Holy Spirit will mean to the advancement of the Kingdom of God.

 

Living by grace is the most certain way of staying in God’s will. Living by grace brings glory to God and advances the Kingdom of God—even when His leading seems to be foolish to us and to others.