They Are Calling for Scattered Disciples

Pastor James Turnes   -  

Awhile back, my wife and I took my son and his girlfriend to Indianapolis. I love to go into the city for a couple of reasons. The main reason is GREAT food! There is just something about city food that makes your mouth water. It was a beautiful day out as we were looking for a place to park. After driving around for a bit we found a good place to park at a reasonable rate of $5 an hour or $13 for the entire day. The moment we stepped out of the garage it began to pour down rain.

You should have seen us. We were ducking and weaving from awning to awning trying not to get soaked. It was pretty hilarious as we went from one side of the street to the next trying to get to our destination. I even had the bright idea to cut through a parking garage that lead us to a dead end on the other side in the middle of an alley way. It was kind of scary as there were people in that alley and we didn’t know who they were or what they were doing. But praise God we doubled back and back into the rain we go. Eventually we just accepted the fact we were going to get wet. But it didn’t ruin our day. We went on to the mall and bought fidget spinners (huge thing when I wrote this) and went to see Guardians of the Galaxy 2.0 and then on to dinner. Bottom line is we had fun despite the storm outside.

The Lord dropped into my heart this passage of Scripture found in the book of Acts.

Acts 8:4
“Therefore, those who had been scattered went about preaching the word.”

Here we find the disciples had been scattered about across the land. The reason they were scattered was there was a man named Saul who was persecuting them. Saul went from house to house tearing things up and flipping their world upside down. Taking them and dragging them off to prison. It is no wonder they began to scatter.

But here is what amazes me. We are told they still went on preaching the Word of God. In spite of the persecution, trials, pain, and discomfort…they still held their witness for Christ.

God tells us that we too will be persecuted and go through trials in this life. In fact James 1:2 tells us to “count it all joy” when we go through the trials in this life. Why would we want to be joyful? Why would the disciples want to be joyful after having their houses ransacked and their family drug off to prison? Well, there is a reason. That reason is God has a greater plan and He wants us to be a part of it.

You see, sometimes God will allow things into our lives for His GREATER purposes. Think about it for a moment. What if the persecution never happened in our Scripture? What if Saul never came to their house and took their family off to prison? The disciples would have probably stayed and never left to preach the Gospel message to the world.

The disciples have had a habit of staying in one place. Go back to Acts 1 and we can see them staring off into the sky as Jesus ascended and just waiting there. An angel of the Lord had to appear and tell them to get going. We too are no different. God allows trials and tribulations into our lives to get us moving. Otherwise we would just stand there gazing into the heavens waiting on Jesus to return.

But we can take comfort today! Jesus tells us these words that will bring comfort and peace to our situations no matter what it is we are facing today:

John 16:33
“Be courageous! I have conquered the world!”

When my family was in Indianapolis, we could have allowed the rain to ruin our day and rob us of a good time. But we didn’t. We chose to accept that we cannot change the weather and we went on. Here is the best part. By the time we got out of the movie, the sun was shining and the rain had stopped.

Here is what I want to leave with you today. The rains will come in your life. The storms will be there. Though it may be dark and cloudy out now, just remember that the sun will soon shine again. So press on. Keep going. Don’t give up and don’t let a little rain ruin the sunshine that is coming.