Papa J's Journal

Wednesday, June 12, 2024

Daily Devotional with Pastor Jon

June 12

Now I beseech you, brethren, for the Lord Jesus Christ’s sake, and for the love of the Spirit, that ye strive together with me in your prayers to God for me: That I may be delivered from them that do not believe in Judaea; and that my service which I have for Jerusalem may be accepted of the saints; That I may come unto you with joy by the will of God, and may with you be refreshed.

Romans 15:30-32

Paul requested prayer that he might be protected from the unbelievers in Jerusalem who were out to do him in, that he might be accepted by the believers there, and that he might come with joy to Rome.

Was Paul protected?

So severe was the stoning he received at the hands of unbelieving Jews, that his life was spared only when he was taken into protective custody by Lycinius, a Roman centurion (Acts 21).

Was he accepted by the believers?

The believers themselves were the underlying reason for the stoning he received (Acts 21:18-25). Furthermore, they never thanked him for the offering he risked his life to deliver to them, nor does Scripture record any of them speaking with him or caring for him during the two years he was in protective custody.

Did he come to Rome with joy?

He traveled to Rome in the galley of a boat, a prisoner of the Roman Empire.

And so we wonder. It looks like the prayers of the Romans weren’t answered — or were they?

Was he protected?

Yes. He didn’t die. Bloodied? You bet — but he didn’t die.

Was he accepted by the believers?

Oh, not initially — but eventually, for Peter himself instructed the believers to listen to what Paul had to say (2 Peter 3:15).

Did he make it to Rome?

While he didn’t travel in the way he intended, at least his trip was all-expenses paid!

Gang, like Paul, sometimes we say, ‘Pray for me. I’m going through this struggle, and here are three things I need to see happen ...’ And although we pray with fervency, sometimes initially it seems like just the opposite of what we hoped for happens. But wait. I have discovered that usually when I think prayers are not being answered, it’s simply because I have not seen the unique and beautiful way God is working.

This article was in the paper this morning ...

Dateline: Vermont. A woman in Alaska recently tried to call her sister in Idaho and mistakenly dialed a house in Vermont. She got through to 89 year old Mildred Connor, who, at that moment, was suffering a severe heart attack. At that point, the Alaskan woman heard a gasping voice with weak breath saying, ‘Help me, help me. Please, God, help me.’

Alice Witt meant to call Area Code 208, but called 802 instead and reached Rutland, Vermont. She and her husband were able to work with telephone operators and emergency personnel, who rushed to the scene and saved Mildred Connor’s life.

Sometimes when I pray, I think all I get are busy signals or wrong numbers. But God is working in ways that, if I’ll just hang in there, time will prove over and over again His hand throughout. The purpose and the power of prayer is to get the Lord’s blessing on your life, not to get your way for your life. The prayers Paul requested on his behalf were truly answered in the best possible way.

Lives were touched;
folks were saved;
and we're encouraged here today -
because people prayed.

This Daily Devotional is an excerpt from the book "A Day's Journey" by Pastor Jon. "A Day's Journey" is a collection of 365 short devotions from the New Testament. If you would like your own copy of "A Day's Journey" you can order one from the SearchLight Store.


Pastor Jon's Complete
Through-the-Bible Teachings
in MP3 Audio Format on a
USB Flash Drive

This flash drive contains Pastor Jon's teachings through the entire Bible (Genesis through Revelation) in MP3 audio format. There are over 1200 teachings which include Jon's verse by verse exposition of the Bible as well as the Sunday sermons which take a more in-depth look at a section of the Scripture from the verse by verse study.