Outside the Lines
Acts 11:1-3 (NIV®)
The apostles and the brothers throughout Judea heard that the Gentiles also had received the word of God. So when Peter went up to Jerusalem, the circumcised believers criticized him and said, “You went into the house of uncircumcised men and ate with them.”
I don’t’ think those first believers ever imagined that the Jesus-story would move beyond the boundaries of Judaism. But God had sent Peter to Caesarea, a pagan city with a temple to a Roman god at its center. The events from the day of Pentecost were duplicated there, and the story of the Church forever changed. When Peter went back to give a report, the folks who had been at the very core of Jesus’ ministry were unhappy with him because he’d gone outside the lines they had drawn. Peter assured them that what happened in Caesarea was due to the supernatural involvement of God. Is it possible that we too might still have room to grow in our imagination of how and where and when God might be at work? The reality is that none of us is fully formed spiritually. But the story of Scripture is that God will increase our understanding of His purposes if we will open our hearts and minds to cooperating with Him.
Heavenly Father, I yield the strength of my life to You. In this generation, may Your Kingdom be expanded, the name of Jesus be lifted up, and the Church strengthened. Holy Spirit, open my eyes to see and my heart to understand Your purposes for me. In Jesus’ name, amen.
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