“I urge you to take some food. You need it to survive. Not one of you will lose a single hair from his head.” After he said this, he took some bread and gave thanks to God in from of them all. Then he broke and began to eat. – Acts 27:34-35
Paul was on a prison ship being taken to Rome when a huge storm caught them and was about to destroy the ship. Paul had been warned in the Spirit that disaster awaited them if they continued on their journey and he had urged them to stay in Crete, but they ventured out into the open seas and were caught in a terrible storm.
They had struggled against the storm and sea for a long time until finally the sailors gave up any hope of survival. Then an angel appeared to Paul and told him that the ship would be lost but not one life would be lost if they stayed with the ship.
After fourteen days Paul brought the men together and told them to eat. That is where our passage for today begins. Paul saw the necessity for the men to come together to eat and pray. He saw they were exhausted and needed a little rest. He also knew that if they ate their strength would be renewed and their courage would return.
There are many lessons for us in this story. One of those lessons is that when times get tough we must persevere, keep hope and not abandon ship. That is one of the reasons we need each other. We need someone among us who will encourage us to continue pushing toward the goal and who will realize when we need to replenish our energy and courage.
Another lesson to learn is that we need the fellowship of people who are in the same boat as we are. We need times of setting down with others in the faith and hear what God is doing in them and through them. We need to share where we are on our journey of faith.
I was once in a communion service with a group of ministers. After receiving the bread and the juice I was suddenly struck with a new identity with those brethren. We had as one partaken of the bread and juice that symbolized the body of Christ. We were now members of that same body.
Prayer: Sometimes I become impatient in trials and want to do things my way. Grant me the grace to trust you and others. Amen.
Add To Your Faith… Knowledge
Principle: It is our confidence, or faith, in Christ as the revelation of God which gives us the conviction for a life of being committed to the principles of God’s word.
Affirmation: I am daily adding knowledge of God to my mind and heart and faith in his word gives me the conviction for a life committed to the principles of the faith.
Reflection: In order to continually be effective in our faith we must establish the pattern of adding knowledge of God and his plan to our heart and mind. What can you do to make adding knowledge to your faith a reality in your life?
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