This series focuses on praying for our Native American brothers and sisters, particularly those living on reservations.
[These devotions come from Jesus Culture's "Faith for Your City" Devotion Series with some alterations]
Need to start at the beginning? Read Week 1 here.
Many of them believed his message and were baptized, and about three thousand people were added to the group that day. (Acts 2:41)
Is it possible for my reservation to be completely transformed in a day?
Through the prophet Isaiah, the Lord assures us that nothing is beyond God's power. (Isaiah 66:8) It may seem impossible to our human minds, but again in the New Testament, from Jesus himself, we are assured that "there is nothing that God cannot do." (Luke 1:37)
This atmosphere of faith is the environment in which the first church was born. The early believers waiting in Jerusalem for heavenly power and God answered their prayers. After the believers were filled with the Spirit, Peter spoke to the crowd and invited them to receive salvation. (Acts 2:41) They could see their desperate need for a change and God's Spirit opened their eyes to that Jesus was the Savior.
DUring that time, the population of Jerusalem was around 30,000. So when the Scripture says 3,000 people were added to the group, that's ten percent of the city!
We want this for the reservations!
But sometimes God's timing doesn't match our own. Could God do it? Yes. But it isn't always that easy.
Paul, for example, didn't see that type of transformation in Ephesus.
When he first arrived, he spent three months in the synagogue, speaking with the people, holding discussions, and attempting to convince them about Jesus. (Acts 19:8) Three months is a long time to spend with a group of people, but Paul felt led by God to stay and to plant seeds of faith.
Eventually, the Jewish leaders kicked him out. He "left them and took the believers with him, and every day he held discussions in the lecture hall of Tyrannus. This went on for two years..." (Acts 19:9-10)
But because of his faithfulness and perseverance, Paul led thousands to Jesus and transformed the city of Ephesus. His church eventually became the largest in the region and spread the Gospel to the surrounding cities.
Would Paul have been happy if Ephesus had turned to Jesus that first day? Of course, but he understood God's timing was not his own and that his time and effort would add to God's Kingdom and bring glory to His Lord.
Reservations may come to Christ in a day or in a decade, but we must persevere and trust that God's timing is always correct.
Jesus, we know nothing is impossible with You. Bless [my reservation/city] in ways only you can imagine and only you can accomplish! I want to see [my reservation/city] transformed no matter how long it may take.