• Larry & Janet Neville

Staying STRONG through Disruptions


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Disruption is something that you don't control.

Distraction is something you do control.

The goal is not to allow disruptions to become distractions.


The Apostle Paul is standing before King Agrippa, giving his defense of why he is a prisoner. Here he tells the king what Jesus promised him and called him to do.


"'I will deliver you from the Jewish people, as well as from the Gentiles, to whom I now send you, To open their eyes, in order to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith in Me.' "Therefore, King Agrippa, I was not disobedient to the heavenly vision" Acts 26:18-19.


1. The Clear Calling

Paul's testimony is recorded three times in the New Testament. I think Paul shared his testimony a lot. In this call is the essence of the call of the Church of Jesus Christ.


"He said to them, 'Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation'" Mark 16:15.


"But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth" Acts 1:8.


"For 'whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.' 14 How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher?" Romans 10:13-14,


"He said to his disciples, 'The harvest is so great, but the workers are so few. 38 So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send out more workers for his fields'" Matthew 9:37-38.


Packed within Paul's calling and testimony, we see the calling of all the church through all the AGES! Preach the good news.

This Message turns people from darkness to light and from the Power of Satan to God.


"Though I am the least deserving of all God's people, he graciously gave me the privilege of telling the Gentiles about the endless treasures available to them in Christ" Ephesians 3:8-9 NLT.


"God's purpose in all this was to use the church to display his wisdom in its rich variety to all the unseen rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. 11 This was his eternal plan, which he carried out through Christ Jesus our Lord" Ephesians 3:10-11 NLT.


2. The danger we face in fulfilling our CALLING: Disruptions AND Distractions


"Therefore, King Agrippa, I was not disobedient to the heavenly vision" Acts 26:19.


Disruptions come in every person's life. Every goal, vision, or anything you want to achieve in life will be tasted Disruptions.


"Three times, I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked. Once I spent a whole night and a day adrift at sea. 26 I have traveled many weary miles. I have faced danger from flooded rivers and from robbers. I have faced danger from my own people, the Jews, as well as from the Gentiles. I have faced danger in the cities, in the deserts, and on the stormy seas. And I have faced danger from men who claim to be Christians but are not. 27 I have lived with weariness and pain and sleepless nights. Often I have been hungry and thirsty and have gone without food. Often I have shivered with cold, without enough clothing to keep me warm" 2 Corinthians 11:25-27 NLT.


Paul never allowed the disruptions to become distractions. Even in prison he writes,


"But I want you to know, brethren, that the things which happened to me have actually turned out for the furtherance of the gospel, 13 so that it has become evident to the whole palace guard, and to all the rest, that my chains are in Christ" Philippians 1:12.


Prison was a disruption, but it was not a distraction.


Paul stops to visit the church at Ephesus on his way to Jerusalem. He recounts to them his life example.


"You know, from the first day that I came to Asia, in what manner I always lived among you, 19 serving the Lord with all humility, with many tears and trials which happened to me by the plotting of the Jews; 20 how I kept back nothing that was helpful, but proclaimed it to you, and taught you publicly and from house to house, 21 testifying to Jews, and also to Greeks, repentance toward God and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ. 22 And see, now I go bound in the spirit to Jerusalem, not knowing the things that will happen to me there, 23 except that the Holy Spirit testifies in every city, saying that chains and tribulations await me. 24 But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my [b]race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God" Acts 20:18.


3. How? Obedience

"Therefore, King Agrippa, I was not disobedient to the heavenly vision" Acts 26:19.


"For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man's obedience many will be made righteous" Romans 5:19.


"Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one's slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness?" Romans 6:16.


WHY?


"This is the Message I've been set apart to proclaim as preacher, emissary, and teacher. It's also the cause of all this trouble I'm in. But I have no regrets. I couldn't be more sure of my ground—the One I've trusted in can take care of what he's trusted me to do right to the end" 1 Timothy 1:11-12 MSG.


Two little lines I heard one day,

Traveling along life's busy way;

Bringing conviction to my heart,

And from my mind would not depart;

Only one life, 'twill soon be past,

Only what's done for Christ will last.

Be STRONG. . . .


Larry & Janet Neville