Acts 24:10-27; Judges 21; Psalm 46
Convenience has always been a secular worship practice, if not a god unto itself. As Paul continued this first trial at Caesarea he ran into that issue. He testified before Felix and was sent away. When Felix felt like it, he called for Paul again. “And after some days, when Felix came with his wife Drusilla, who was Jewish, he sent for Paul and heard him concerning the faith in Christ. Now as he reasoned about righteousness, self-control, and the judgment to come, Felix was afraid and answered, ‘Go away for now; when I have a convenient time I will call for you.’” (Acts 24:24-25) The words of truth that Paul shared with Felix about the need for salvation were not only frightening, they were inconvenient. Besides, Felix would have been happy with a bribe to let Paul out. I imagine that if Paul wanted to be released that way, he could have sent out the message and the money could have been raised in a heartbeat. Instead, Paul sought a higher goal: the soul of Felix and Drusilla, his wife. Felix talked with Paul over the course of two years and it was never convenient for Felix to recognize the truth of the gospel. In truth, the gospel is still inconvenient. A commitment to Christ will cause changes in our lifestyles. There are some things we know we should stop doing. There are other things we know we should start doing. Lifestyle changes are inconvenient. People don’t want to make them for medical reasons, let alone for reasons that they couldn’t explain to their friends. Following Jesus may be the most inconvenient thing you ever do – but you will never regret it. If you haven’t made that inconvenient decision you can do it right now. Turn to Jesus who died for you and experience the joy.
Lord God, when You died for me on the cross you suffered not because it was the easy thing to do, but because that is what I needed. Help me to reach out to people in the way that they need me to. Let my words and my life reflect Your love and grace for others.