Wake Up Call

December 1, 2020

ACTS 8:26-31

THE HOLY SPIRIT’S LEADING

When I woke up this morning, I realized that I was not at home before I even opened my eyes.  You see, when I’m at home either my internal clock gets me up each morning, or my alarm clock keeps me from oversleeping.  Well, when I’m on the road, I almost never need an alarm clock.  Inevitably, there’s a friendly neighborhood rooster, a dog, or in this case, exotic birds that are willing to wake me up long before the sun ever breaks the horizon!  

When I’m traveling, I tend to be more attentive to my environment and sensitive to unfamiliar noises.  Sometimes, that means I’m going to get less sleep.  Sometimes, however, changing up my environment helps me to become more aware of what God is trying to do around me and through me.

In the Book of Acts, we see God establishing His church beyond Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria.  God uses a variety of people to do so, including Peter, John, Stephen and Philip the evangelist.  In chapter 8, for example, an angel of the Lord tells Philip, “Rise and go toward the south to the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.”  Philip obediently rises and goes on his way.  On this desert road, Philip continues to listen to the Holy Spirit who tells him to go over and join a chariot that is moving south.

As he does so, Philip encounters a surprising character, an Ethiopian eunuch.  This Ethiopian was a man of faith, but he lacked understanding of the new work that God had just accomplished through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  Philip hears the familiar words of the prophet Isaiah being read aloud and he has a perfect opportunity to share about Jesus.  The Ethiopian accepts the good news and is baptized.  And so the Gospel enters the African continent by the grace and design of God.  This narrative shows that Philip was willing to move into a new place as he was led by the Lord.  As he did so, he stayed sensitive to his environment and the work of the Holy Spirit … and God used him!

TIME TO “WAKE UP”

Sometimes, we can be lulled into thinking that the people around us fall into two groups:  either they’ve heard about Jesus and come to faith, or they’ve heard about Jesus and rejected him.  The truth is, there are millions of people around the world, including many here in California, who have no relationship with Jesus because they have never even heard his name.  It’s hard to believe, but our local outreach partners testify that it’s true.  This means we need a wake-up call.  In a very real sense, our neighbors are at great risk of dying before they are ever given the opportunity to hear the good news and respond in faith … unless you and I do something about it.  We need to become more sensitive to how God is moving around us and respond accordingly.

REFLECTION

So, what’s your sensitivity level?  Do you need to change up your environment and establish some new patterns?  How can you become more sensitive to the Holy Spirit as he creates opportunities to share the good news of Jesus?  

As we move through the day ahead, may we “wake up” to our environment and move with greater sensitivity so that we can take advantage of every opportunity God gives us to share the good news of Jesus Christ.  

About The Author

Dan Wendell

Dan joined the Cornerstone team in November 2018 as the Pastor of Missions. His focus is on empowering the church family to step beyond the boundaries of CCLB to declare the Good News, so that the Body of Christ might be established where it would not otherwise occur. In addition, Dan provides oversight for Cornerstone’s Care ministries.