God’s plan for Onesimus and Philemon were not exactly what they had picked out for themselves. I don’t think it would have been in Onesiumus’ thought process to return, and I’m fairly confident it wasn’t in Philemon’s plan to accept him back with open arms. Also, they probably didn’t plan on being converted. Be that as it may, there was still a plan set out for them.
And you know what? It was a pretty good plan in the end. A little unconventional, but the results were pretty fantastic (I think, at least). So it reminds us that even when our life plan seems to make no sense, God is completely in control and he will make it beautiful in the end. It’s hard to trust, yes, but there is a beautiful story to tell on the other side.
Side not to start: what kind of an insult is “whitewashed wall”? YOU CLEAN PERSON YOU. Maybe it means they’re only a wall? or they’re covering something up? I don’t get it 😦
i don’t have much to say about this passage except that God continues to keep Paul alive to fulfill his purposes. In a time when he could have died at any turn, God continued to preserve his life until he reached a point where he had finished all that God had planned. Paul was able to then go out and live his life in the face of danger, knowing that if he died it was the will of God. When I think about it that way, it makes it a lot easier for me to do things that are “scary” or that I’m afraid of, because I know that no matter what happens, God will be using me to fulfill his plans. (i have an abnormal fear of drive by shootings, ok?). God will use whoever and whatever he needs to fulfill his purposes on earth. I can rest in that.
“Let the will of the LORD be done” – Acts 21:14b
Paul’s dependence on God in everything he does reminds me today that i should be trusting in that plan instead of my own. In reality, it makes sense. Trust in the all knowing mind of God, or the shallow, narrow mind of me. Sometimes it doesn’t make sense to do what God wants (like speaking to a mob of angry people), but God still uses Paul’s willingness and status as a Roman citizen to further the spread of the Gospel.
It reminds me to double check myself. Are there things that I can be offering to God to let him use right now? What am I holding onto that he could be using to touch other people? At camp it’s easy to give pretty much all of your time, but in real life I feel like I’m a lot more selfish with things and time. And yet I can still grow and learn how to let him work in everything i do.