Walking Headlong Into Trouble

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In today’s Bible reading*, we see Paul doing a very foolish thing. He says that God has told him that if he returns to Jerusalem, he will face trouble. In fact, Paul says that everywhere he goes, the Holy Spirit confirms that if he goes to Jerusalem, he will face imprisonment and afflictions. (Acts 20:23) So why would he go to the very place where he would face such hardships?

Dr. Luke answers that question with Acts 20:22: “And now, behold, I am going to Jerusalem, constrained by the Spirit, not knowing what will happen to me there.”

Earlier, I said that Paul did a very foolish thing. Actually, it wasn’t foolish at all. In fact, it was the wisest thing he could have possibly done!


Where the Holy Spirit leads, you will find peace. Now, I didn’t say that where the Spirit leads, you will find prosperity. No, where the Holy Spirit leads, you will always find peace and God’s blessings. You don’t want to be where God doesn’t want you to be.

Many years ago, I lamented to a friend that I hadn’t yet been called to my first church ministry position after seminary. He wisely remarked that “No place is better than the wrong place. Trust me, I’ve been there.”

As our son prepared to go back to Australia with YWAM (Youth With A Mission) for two years, many people asked Amy and me if we were concerned with his leaving and going literally to the other side of the world for so long. We responded, that if God is calling him to study and minister there, the last place we wanted him to be was here with us. Yes, we missed him. Yes, we were concerned with his welfare. But we knew that he was in the hands of a totally sovereign God who is always good and Who loves our son more than we do. We didn’t know at the time that within days after he flew to Australia, countries would shut down and close their borders because of Covid-19. He was given an opportunity to hop back on the plane to return immediately, but he, too knew that his life was in God’s hands.

If you have a sovereign God (and we do), your anxiety level drops a great deal. God knows what He’s doing and is always in control of every situation.

* Today we are reading Acts 20.

This devotional was originally published on February 19, 2020.

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