Scattered on Purpose (Jun 11)

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June 11
Scattered On Purpose

Today’s Scripture Readings: Psalm 131:1-3 | 1 Kings 8:1-66 | Acts 7:51-8:13 | Proverbs 17:1-33

Today’s Scripture Focus: Acts 7:51-8:13

“On that day a great persecution broke out against the church in Jerusalem, and all except the apostles were scattered throughout Judea and Samaria…Those who had been scattered preached the gospel wherever they went.” (Acts 8:1, 4 TNIV)

The stoning of Stephen was just the beginning of a wave of persecution against believers in Jerusalem. Saul and his associates went from house to house dragging Christians from their homes and putting them into prison. What would happen to the young church?

Even while Satan seemed to be getting the upper hand, God remained sovereign. The believers’ willingness to suffer for the sake of the name only made their witness more powerful. Their boldness in spite of threat and persecution only amplified the words they spoke.

The persecution also was a means of fulfilling the Great Commission. The church was moving beyond the walls of Jerusalem into all of Judea and Samara—just as Jesus said it must.

God uses the tough times in our lives to show forth his power in our weakness. Sometimes God uses the tough times to move us to another place, sometimes spiritually, sometimes physically, sometimes both.

When you are feeling beat up, lost and like your world is out of control, know that God is still watching over you. He has a plan to use even this tough time for his glory. His design is that in this you would trust him and continue to proclaim his goodness to others. There is a purpose in the tough time. There is a purpose in pushing you out of the comfortable nest and into a new place in your walk with Him.

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About pastorjeffsneighborhood

Born and raised in Minnesota, I have served in churches in Minnesota, Ohio, Oregon and California. I am a graduate of Crown College (MN) and George Fox Evangelical Seminary (OR). I have also done additional graduate studies in New Testament Studies at the Center for Advanced Theological Studies at Fuller Theological Seminary (CA). I am also a graduate of the College of Prayer. Having served as the Academic Dean and Program Director at Horizon Institute of Los Angeles for several years, I have returned to the pastorate and serve as Pastor of Big Trees Community Bible Church in Arnold, CA.
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