Thursday, February 17, 2011

Was Philip Jealous?

It's a bit of a contemplative evening here. We're in Grand Rapids, Michigan to share about the IT need in missions at Calvin College. Greg and I have a house to ourselves for three days (thanks to a prof on sabbatical) which has been a blessing. Don't get me wrong, we love our host families, but sometimes having your own place is nice too!

So. Contemplative evening. The quiet sounds of typing and pages turning are broken only by the buzzing of a large fly who is mesmerized by my reading light. It's February. There should be no large fly. Whatever.

Do you ever get jealous of someone else's work? Even if it is good, God-appointed work?

I had an opportunity to do that today when we found out that another mission organization was on Calvin's campus recruiting IT interns. And I suppose I could have gotten jealous. But I really (honestly!) didn't. I've been trying to find out the IT intern needs for other mission orgs so I can help recruit interns for them! So here was perfect opportunity to find out how I could help this org! After all, it's a really BIG harvest field and just ONE Big Boss.

I was reading in Acts 8 today. Philip left Jerusalem and started preaching the Gospel in Samaria. He was the first person to preach that message to the Samaritans. And what a response! The people "with one accord gave heed to those things Philip spoke...and there was great joy in that city."

Then comes verse 14. The disciples in Jerusalem hear about it and they send Peter and John down. Can you imagine what Philip could have felt?

"Wait - this is my ministry! Why are you sending P&J down? I don't need them butting in! Aren't I good enough?"

But I don't think he did. Instead of clinging to his own ministry, he was flexible with what the Lord wanted to do.

Hanging on would have built walls between him and the disciples. It could have caused bitterness that would have greatly hindered his relationship with God and his ministry.

But letting go allowed him to remain sensitive to the Holy Spirit and hear from God for the next assignment. Because he chose to humbly serve in unity, he was in right relationship with God to hear "go talk to that Ethiopian."

Which decisions are you making?

P.S. Cool video! Did you know that Wycliffe is using the same software used for Avatar to produce the Scripture in sign language?

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