“Now the apostles and the brothers who were throughout Judea heard that the Gentiles also had received the word of God. So when Peter went up to Jerusalem, the circumcision party criticized him, saying, ‘You went to uncircumcised men and ate with them.’” Acts 11:1–3
Some people hate change. Are you one of them? Is change hard for you? Do you get nervous and desire a quick return to the way things used to be?
For many (especially those in the church), change can be very challenging, especially when it looms on the horizon. They might ask, “Are you sure we should be doing this?” to question the motives for change, to blatantly resist, or to incite others to join them.
Sadly, this happens in many businesses, civic organizations, and churches. It also happened when God ushered in a whole new era, inviting outsiders into his redemptive plan.
We have learned throughout Acts that God was starting something completely new through the Holy Spirit. We learned about this last week in the account of Peter and Cornelius. As we move on to chapter 11, we learn that not everyone was excited about the fact that other people groups were being allowed into the community of faith—the “circumcision party” condemned Peter for visiting the house of a Gentile.
There will always be resistance to the movement of God. Sometimes God calls his people to lead out and change things from the way they have always been. We need not fear change because God goes with us into the unknown future and promises to never leave or forsake us.
“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10
- How can this verse be a comfort for us when people resist change?
- List some of the downsides of never changing anything in our churches.
Father, thank you that never allow people to hinder your ultimate plans. We don’t want to resist, but we want to be on board with what you would have for us as we move into the future. Help us to know how to wisely navigate through change and bring the most glory to you in the process. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
This devotion is adapted from the Acts Study Guide: Chapter 6–11. Pick up a copy today for only $9.99. The Study Guide includes an 11-week curriculum with small group studies, group inductive studies, as well as 55 daily devotions for your personal or family worship.