February 16, 2016

When You Don’t Want to Go

Written by Shana Schutte

When You Don’t Want to Go 2.16

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – February 16, 2016 

By Shana Schutte

If anyone comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even their own life—such a person cannot be my disciple. Luke 14:26

Each Sunday after church, my husband and I pile into the car and head to our favorite salad spot. On the way, we talk about the sermon and share what part of the message hit us. This week, Acts 8:1 grabbed me right in the heart. “On that day a great persecution broke out against the church in Jerusalem, and all except the apostles were scattered throughout Judea and Samaria.”

Can you imagine it? The Jews were forced to leave their homes in Jerusalem because of persecution. They didn’t have a choice. They had been done wrong and they had to leave. The great news is that these faithful believers were like little spores—or seeds—sent into the world to share the love of Christ with those who had never heard.

“Those who had been scattered preached the word wherever they went” (Acts 8:4).

When they were forced out of Jerusalem, I can’t imagine they said, “This is awesome. Because of our persecution and scattering away from home, God is spreading the Good News of salvation to all people.” They couldn’t have seen through the front windshield what could only be seen through the rearview mirror. But they were obedient to share Jesus’ love wherever they went and trust Him with their futures—even though it was somewhere that didn’t feel like home.

This message speaks to me and my husband as we prepare to move away from our cute, little Chicago suburb just 18 months after we moved in. Even though God is calling us to a new, noble assignment, we can’t help but feel a little like we’re being scattered. We don’t want to leave just when are getting to know our favorite waitress at our Saturday morning breakfast spot, just when the house is painted and we are making good friends. But we remember that our lives are not our own, that we are not here to be served but to serve, and that there are people who need to know Jesus and His grace. So like the Jews and all believers, we are little seeds that are being sent into the world. Even though we can’t see through the front windshield what we will be able to see through the rearview mirror, we are choosing obedience over comfort.

Has God asked you to go where you don’t want to go? Trust Him and choose to serve Him wherever He calls, even if it’s somewhere that isn’t comfortable or doesn’t feel like home.

“Anyone who loves their life will lose it, while anyone who hates their life in this world will keep it for eternal life” (John 12:25).

Prayer:  Lord, help me to love you more than I love my life. Please forgive me for those times when I have been a whiny child, only willing to serve you when it’s comfortable. I want to follow you wherever you lead. Amen.

Application: Talk with the Lord today and tell Him you are willing to go wherever He calls.

Related Readings: Acts 20:24; Psalm 73:25-26; Matthew 22:37

Tweet this today: What do you do when God calls and you don’t want to go? #WisdomHunters #ItsForHisGlory

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Comments

  1. Jose Martinez says:

    I lost my job but before it happen my wife, pastor and close friends said to me that I needed a different job because this one was killing me. I was in the hospital for 3 day with high blood pressure but the Doctors couldn’t find anything, God was talking through my wife and others and I didn’t pay attention until I they let me go for no reason, this is the people I was praying to receive the Jesus, now that I read your message, I feel part of the persecution when we follow Jesus. God bless you.

    1. Gwynne says:

      Dear Jose,
      Thank you so much for sharing your story with us. We are thankful that you are feeling better and that you are surrounded by wise family and friends that love you (wife, pastor and close friends that were advising you).
      What a clear example of God using others to speak to us and look out for us. They are a blessing to you as I am sure you are to them.
      May God continue to bless you and guide you in your life. HE has big plans for you!
      We are grateful that you are a fellow wisdom hunter and look forward to hearing from you again.
      Believing and trusting~
      Gwynne
      “For I know the plans I have for you, ‘declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all of your heart.”
      Jeremiah 29:11-13

      “But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.”
      Hebrews 3: 13

  2. PB says:

    If you don’t want to go, maybe you should re-think going. God usually gives a desire to go if He is really calling you.

    1. Gwynne says:

      Dear PB,
      Thank you for your thought provoking comments. I read and re-read Shana’s devotional and thought about what you had to say about re-thinking going when you do not want to. Hmmmm. I think you may have a point because I know that there is a Peace that transcends all understanding when you get that “heavenly confirmation”.

      “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving,
      present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7

      BUT, I have to respectfully disagree with you that this happens all the time. I believe there are many times, that we do not feel that desire to go, when we are called. As Shana writes in “When you Don’t Want to Go”, our ancient Christian brothers and sisters were forced to leave Jerusalem (Acts 8:1)and I cannot imagine they had the “desire to go”. Plenty of times, the body of Christ is asked to go somewhere we do not want to go, without the desire (or even the understanding) where we are to go. Then, it’s all about Trust and Obedience.
      PB, humbly and honestly, I admit I am not always one that trusts and obeys but devotionals like “When You Don’t want to Go” are great reminders, arent they?
      We are grateful for you, PB, and look foward to hearing from you again. Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts with us.
      Believing and trusting~
      Gwynne
      “And this is love; that we walk in obedience of his commands.”
      2 John 1:6

  3. Shirley says:

    This article brings such a smile to my face because I completely understand and can relate.

    Almost three years ago, GOD called my husband and I to homelessness…this is so out of our comfort zone! As I look back, I can see how GOD was preparing us in so many different ways to accomplish this mission. At midnight, exactly, on April 1, 2013, we left out of our home…not knowing what, where, how, etc…just following GOD’s lead.

    We had no idea that it would be this long (March 31, 2016 would make it 3 complete years). I must say that we really have began to get to know GOD (if I can put it that way), and learn his voice…and depend TOTALLY upon Him..

    It is a life of suffering, but, it is a life full of joy, to say the least…it is redemptive. So many souls have crossed our paths…to GOD be all of the glory for the things HE has done.

    GOD has also shared with us about things that are coming to this world (terrible things) and how HE is going to hide his people, supernaturally.

    I just remembered, we are totally misunderstood by most people…many that we know are lying on us…they are spying and laughing at us…they are spreading gossip about us…so, this is a suffering, too.

    Well, JESUS suffered for us, so, we do not mind at all suffering for HIM. We do not mind loosing our lives that we may gain it.

    So, I understand how GOD can call one to be completely out of his comfort zone…We believe that this assignment is almost over…My soul doth magnify The LORD, for HE is so good!

    Peace…Shirley

    1. Gwynne says:

      Dear Shirley,
      Thank you for reaching out to us with your amazing story. You and your husband are truly examples of obedience and trusting Him when you are called out of your comfort zones. Thank you for sharing the story of your “heavenly assignment”. I can only imagine how many lives you are touching as you witness to others.
      Please keep me posted (gwynne@wisdomhunters.com) as you continue your faith-filled adventure.
      You so beautifully summed it all up when you said ” Well, Jesus suffered for us, so we do not mind suffering for HIM. We do not mind loosing our lives that we may gain it.”
      I look forward to hearing for you again.
      Blessings to you and your husband~
      Gwynne
      “Peacemakers who sow in peace raise a harvest of righteousness.” James 3:18

      “Let us not grow weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”
      Galatians 6:9


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