Brothers and Sisters,
Today’s devotional will be quite brief, since most of what I’d like to express came with this morning’s sermon. You can access our entire “service” via the video on the Felton Bible Church Facebook page (Note: I use the term “service” here cautiously, for lack of a better term, and not because our virtual gathering qualifies as a service in the same way our normal “in person” meeting does). At some point the audio will also appear on our church website (computers are running slowly at the moment). But, that said, here’s a brief thought for today:
Sometimes God scatters his people…purposefully…for a Gospel reason. For instance, he scattered the church in Jerusalem through the persecution that erupted after Stephen’s martyrdom under Saul’s (Paul’s) watching eye. Here’s what we read from the book of Acts:
“And on that day a great persecution began against the church in Jerusalem, and they were all scattered throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles. Some devout men buried Stephen, and made loud lamentation over him. But Saul began ravaging the church, entering house after house, and dragging off men and women, he would put them in prison. Therefore, those who had been scattered went about preaching the word.” (Acts 8:1b-4, NASB)
Imagine being one of those persecuted, scattered believers. What would you have felt? What would I have felt? Regardless of how they felt, their response is awesome! They went about preaching the word. God permitted circumstance to scatter the church, and the church responded by seizing the moment to proclaim the Gospel. Do you know the Latin term, carpe diem…“seize the day” (at least in popular translation)? Acts 8:1b-4 describes the church seizing the day that Jesus gave to them.
So how about us? We have, in a sense, been scattered by the coronavirus. Sure, we’re scattered in homes, but we’re scattered nonetheless. We were unable to meet physically today as Felton Bible Church. So, how do we follow the example of the early believers? How do we recognize this moment of scattering as a God-given opportunity for Gospel proclamation? How do we carpe diem this season of being scattered for the glory of God? May the Lord show you an answer for the specific circumstances he’s given to you! May he show us, as Felton Bible Church, an answer for the general circumstances he’s given to us! May we not waste this time of scattering.
P.S. For those who enjoy such things, attached is a picture of our new, high-speed FBC production studio for virtual Sunday morning services.