“On the Sabbath we went a little way outside the city to a riverbank, where we thought people would be meeting for prayer, and we sat down to speak with some women who had gathered there. One of them was Lydia from Thyatira, a merchant of expensive purple cloth, who worshiped God. As she listened to us, the Lord opened her heart, and she accepted what Paul was saying. … When Paul and Silas left the prison, they returned to the home of Lydia. There they met with the believers and encouraged them once more. Then they left town.” Acts 16:13-14, 40
Lord, help me to be a doer of your Word and not just a hearer.
Too often, we allow fear to be a determining factor in our decisions. Maybe you’re ready for a career change, in need of medical treatment, or desire to pursue healthier relationships. Or maybe God is calling you to step out of your comfort zone and serve him in a specific way. The reality is, no matter what action God calls us to embrace, we all need God-given courage to take that first step.
When God opens doors for us, he won’t leave us alone to face the challenge. God promises to work in and through us, giving us everything we need to accomplish our God-given tasks—if we choose to lean into his guiding and providing hands (Ephesians 3:20).
Lydia, a prominent businesswoman of Thyatira, heard the apostle Paul preach the gospel and seized the opportunity to receive Christ as her savior. She publically confessed her faith and was baptized. Then she immediately began sharing her testimony, and her entire household was saved. Lydia embraced the opportunity to become Paul’s first European convert and accepted God’s calling to lead others to saving faith in Christ and to open her home as a gathering place for believers.Is there an opportunity or challenge God is encouraging you to accept? If so, what is holding you back?
Courageously embrace your God-given opportunities by practicing the following steps.
1. Identify your God-given opportunities.
2. Pinpoint any challenges keeping you from embracing the possibilities.
3. Ask friends and loved ones for support.
4. Determine the necessary steps and take action.
When God opens our hearts to an opportunity, he expects us to embrace it and will give us everything we need to accomplish the task.
What opportunity is God calling you to embrace? Name one step you can take today to engage this opportunity.
Father, thank you for opening doors that challenge me to step out of my comfort zone and follow you. Help me know the steps you are calling me to take and give me courage to take them.
This is an excerpt from Ann White’s 90-day devotional, “She Is Strong and Courageous”. Purchase the book here!