God's Call May Surprise Us

Helen Brownson

READ : Acts 16:6-10

We were in Turkey on a tour bus riding out into the country where few people lived. The terrain became rough, and the bus turned slowly into a lane that was hardly driveable. We left the bus and walked back into the underbrush stumbling over many rocks. Suddenly we came upon the archaeological ruins of the city of Troas. We stood under a huge arch that opened to a large amphitheater. Here Paul must have stood as he entered the city. Here he may have made his plans to proceed on his travels in Asia.

But God spoke to him in a night vision calling him to Europe. “Come over to Macedonia and help us!” pleaded the man in the vision. Paul intended to go on to other cities in Asia but God purposed otherwise. Sometimes God changes our plans and calls us to new ventures.

Paul obeyed that call, and the first church in Europe was founded-Philippi! We are reading his loving letter to this congregation this month, discovering what happens when we hear the Lord’s call. Those ruins in that back field stimulated me to reconsider how God calls and directs us also. Is God calling you to a new challenge?


Gracious God, give us listening ears for your call. And may we obey your charge! In Jesus’ name. Amen.