And now, behold, I am going to Jerusalem, constrained by the Spirit, not knowing what will happen to me there, except that the Holy Spirit testifies to me in every city that imprisonment and afflictions await me. - Acts 20:22-23, ESV
What if you knew beforehand that when you walked into some place, something bad would happen to you? Maybe not bad, but something that would cause great discomfort? Would you still go in, or would you turn around and go home?
I can’t help but wrestle with these same questions of myself as I read this passage. To know that wherever he went, according to the Spirit, that he would be imprisoned and/or afflicted, and then still go ANYWAY, one might call him a gluten for punishment.
But he explains his perspective saying, “But I do not account my life of any value nor as precious to myself…” He understood that there was a higher purpose… He knew that the true value, what gave meaning to His life and even ours today, are the callings and “great plans” (Jer. 29:11) that God has for each of us. We uncover that value, and find the meaning and purpose that we each so desire, only when we completely surrender in our obedience and love of Christ…
Lord, help me to stay focused on You, and to know and be obedient to the purposes you have for my life. In Jesus name I pray. Amen!