Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "I Surrender All"1 (Lyrics)
Acts 7:58 – [The Sanhedrin] dragged [Stephen] out of the city and began to stone him. Meanwhile, the witnesses laid their clothes at the feet of a young man named Saul. (NIV)
I never knew my great-grandfather, Andrew Stuart, but I heard some stories about him from my dad. A hundred years ago, my great-grandfather was in the Royal Scots Guards who were fighting in the trenches of World War I. He was wounded a week before the Armistice was declared in November 1918. He lost an arm, but he didn't let it debilitate his life. He was born in 1875 and lived until 1955. By all accounts, he was a remarkable man, and I would like to have met him personally.
On October 31st this past year, my first grandson, Andrew Richard Listau, was born. I hope that I will have many opportunities to tell him stories about my family and our roots in Scotland. I also find it fascinating that if he lives into his mid-eighties, he will experience the beginning of the 22nd century. That's six generations covering four centuries. How amazing is that?
In the New Testament passage from Acts 7:54-60, we read about the sad ending of Stephen's life, but we are also introduced to another significant life story, that of the young man named Saul. Christ's work may have been completed for Stephen, but the ministry wasn't over. Instead, it was being mysteriously transferred to an enemy of the church called Saul. God's story was continuing despite what may have been seen as a major setback by Christ's followers. The amazing thing is this: that very same story still goes on in our own lives today — person after person, follower after follower, generation after generation, and century after century, until Christ's kingdom truly comes.
Isn't it wonderful to be a part of God's never-ending story of salvation?
Points to ponder: Who helped me to become a Christian? Have I passed on my faith to someone else?
Prayer: Lord Jesus, Your ministry is remarkable, and we feel privileged to play a part in Your continuing mission. Encourage us to be a blessing of faith to someone else, especially among those of a different and future generation. In Your holy name, we pray. Amen.