By: Jordan Valverde, Lead Church Planter | Overflow Church Network, Entrepreneur | Overflowing Leader
May 26, 2019
Acts 20:33-35 I have not coveted anyone’s silver or gold or clothing. You yourselves know that these hands of mine have supplied my own needs and the needs of my companions. In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: “It is more blessed to give than to receive.”
I believe if we’re going to see a spiritual awakening in which the society of our country is touched with the gospel it will happen as a direct result of the church reengaging society with the gospel where they are and not where the church gathers. In Acts 20, Paul models something for us that we as believers desperately need. He modeled a reproducible lifestyle within the normal rhythm of society. His pattern looked less like a monk and more like a normal adult engaged in society through business.
I wonder how many believers look at their spiritual leaders today and think they could do what they see their leaders doing? Paul was keenly aware of what the body of believers in Ephesus needed. From the entire time Paul was in Ephesus he lived a lifestyle like those he was ministering among by working hard to provide for his own needs and for the needs of his teammates. So, you may be asking, “how does Paul carrying on a 9-5 translate into awakening?” My answer to you is in Acts 19. You see in Acts 20, Paul recounts his time in Ephesus. But in Acts 19 we see much of Paul’s pattern of ministry and work ethic while he was in Ephesus and the outcome it produced. What’s important to note is that one of the only recorded instances of an awakening taking place among an entire population in the new testament happens through Paul humbling himself and limiting his lifestyle to what could be reproduced by every believer.
May the Lord open our eyes to the world awaiting us to show them something that they can relate to. A simple enough pattern they could follow that would awaken them to the possibility of God being able to use their life for Kingdom significance.
Father in Heaven, I thank You for giving us a model in the apostle Paul. Help us Lord to see the effectiveness of him choosing to become like those he was ministering to so they could become awakened to the possibility of You using their lives for Your Kingdom. Father, please help us to live reproducible lives whatever the cost to us maybe. We look to You for an awakening of the gospel throughout society and I ask all of this in Jesus’ Name. Amen.