Today’s devotion was written by Mary Jo Foster.
I remember having dinner at a nearby restaurant one night after going through a pretty rough time. Wanting to give me a special treat, a friend also dining there sent over a huge chocolate Sundae for my dessert. It was such a wonderful surprise, especially since I had just given up chocolate for Lent. Let me say that again. I, Mary Jo, who absolutely “loves” chocolate, had to watch while my family ate the chocolate and I tried to get some vanilla ice cream.
I can just imagine how Paul and Barnabas must have felt when the people they had told of God’s love and forgiveness turned around and started calling them Zeus and Hermes, bringing sacrifices to lay at their feet. I’m sure
this was the last thing they were expecting and frantically responded by tearing their clothes and explaining how they had misunderstood. The people were honoring Paul and Barnabas, not the one who sent them.
You know sometimes I feel like everyone is talking, but no one is really listening. We hear everything through the filters of our own experience and sometimes it seems we are speaking two entirely different languages.
Yet Paul never gave up. Even when he tried to explain, many people still clung to their sacrifices. Even when the crowd turned on him, stoned him and left him for dead outside the city gates, he got up and walked back into the city. He continued on his journey, eventually returning again to encourage those who did believe.
How well do you think you listen? What might you do to improve?
How committed are you to hear the truth and help others hear it too?
What are your thoughts, questions, or comments? We love hearing from you!