This event is the third of six visions the apostle Paul receives from the risen Lord Jesus. Like the others, this one comes at just the right time. A vision provides both a directive for the work to be done and reassurance of Jesus’ protective guidance. Paul needs both. From the first letter he writes to the church at Corinth we are given insight into the tremendous physical burden and psychological weight of the gospel he feels during his missionary journeys: “For, when we were come into Macedonia, our flesh had no rest, but we were troubled on every side; disputes without and fears within. Nevertheless God … comforts those that are cast down” (2 Cor.7:5, 6).
Every move, every event in Paul’s life, takes him one step closer to completing his goal to bear Jesus’ name before the Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel (see Acts 9:15). Why does he need to go to Macedonia to meet Lydia from the city of Thyatira? Because the Lord wants to call her, and then later a jailer as part of the plan to introduce the gospel to Macedonia (Acts 16:26-34). One of the most important blessings the called ones receive is when God sends them a faithful gospel preacher.
Come to worship at 10:45 this Sunday at the First Christian Church in Yates Center to learn more about being led by the Spirit.