Today’s Bible Reading: Acts 8
In Acts 8, we read a lot about the ministry of Philip, one of the early Christians. Philip was definitely a man led by the Spirit. When the early Christians were scattered by persecution, Philip went to Samaria and preached the Gospel. Generally speaking, the Jews hated the Samaritans. But that didn’t stop Philip from going there, and while he was there, his ministry prospered!
5 Philip, for example, went to the city of Samaria and told the people there about the Messiah. 6 Crowds listened intently to Philip because they were eager to hear his message and see the miraculous signs he did. 7 Many evil spirits were cast out, screaming as they left their victims. And many who had been paralyzed or lame were healed. 8 So there was great joy in that city.
Philip had an audience. Evil spirits were being cast out. People were being healed! What more could one ask for in a ministry?
And then God told Philip to leave.
As for Philip, an angel of the Lord said to him, “Go south down the desert road that runs from Jerusalem to Gaza.”
Not only did God send a message to Philip to leave his thriving ministry—he told him to leave via a desert road that was seldomly used. Philip certainly had reasons to stay in Samaria—people were being saved, and there was great joy in the city! Why would he want to leave that?
But he did. Philip trusted in the Lord and his plan, and set off for Gaza on the desert road. During that trip, he met “the treasurer of Ethiopia, a eunuch of great authority under the Kandake, the queen of Ethiopia,” riding in a carriage (Acts 8:27-28).
To me at least, these verses make this man sound like a pretty intimidating figure. He was important. He had authority and power. He was riding in a carriage, while Philip had to walk. But that didn’t stop Philip from talking to him, and by the end of their conversation, the eunuch was ready to be baptized.
36 As they traveled along the road, they came to some water and the eunuch said, “Look, here is water. What can stand in the way of my being baptized?”  38 And he gave orders to stop the chariot. Then both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water and Philip baptized him. 39 When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord suddenly took Philip away, and the eunuch did not see him again, but went on his way rejoicing.
Sometimes, God leads us into places we don’t want to go. Sometimes, God leads us out of places where we want to stay. Sometimes, God tells us to speak to people by whom we are intimidated. No matter where he’s asking us to go, one thing is certain: When we trust in God and follow the Holy Spirit’s direction, lives are changed.
Where is the Holy Spirit leading you?
Do you feel God is calling you to a place where you don’t want to go, or out of a place where you’re thriving?
Is he telling you to speak to someone, but you are afraid or don’t have the words?
Spend some time reflecting on where God is leading you. Submit yourself to God’s will for your life. If you feel you’ve been resisting the Spirit’s direction in an area of your life, take some time to address why, either by yourself or with a trusted friend.
Heavenly Father, we know that you are a God of unlimited power and wisdom. We know that when we follow where your lead, lives are changed. Please help us to trust in you and to obey your calling. May your will be done both in us and through us. Amen.
This post was written by Payton Lechner. Payton is currently an intern at CedarCreek and works part-time at her local library. In her spare time, she freelances as a writer and editor. Besides the English language, Payton loves swimming, cats, and a good cup of tea.
Leave a Comment?
We would love to hear how the LivingItOut is making a difference in your life. Let us know how today’s post inspired, challenged, or encouraged you by leaving a comment here.
Want to be a part of the LivingItOut team?
We are always looking for people who are passionate about writing and proofing to serve on the LivingItOut team. If you are interested, email LIO@cedarcreek.tv today!