Unstoppable! 'Exile as Preparation for God’s Future' — Acts 7:29-30

Sunday, April 7, 2024

[Stephen continued talking about Moses in his defense before the council:] When Moses heard that [his killing of an Egyptian was known among the Israelites], he fled the country and lived as a foreigner in the land of Midian. There his two sons were born.

"Forty years later, in the desert near Mount Sinai, an angel appeared to Moses in the flame of a burning bush."

— Acts 7:29-30 NLT

Key Thought

Moses learned the bitter reality of losing his status and his place of privilege in Egypt. We can't fully imagine everything Moses lost moving from the palace of Pharaoh to the wilderness of Sinai. God often lets life humble a person before he uses that person mightily. John, the Baptizer, was raised in the wilderness (Luke 1:80). Jesus worked in obscurity as a carpenter's son for thirty years before his ministry, and then still had to face forty days in the wilderness (Matthew 4:1-2). Paul, the apostle, trained to be a rabbi, then had his life dramatically changed. He spent nearly a decade and a half in the wilderness of obscurity in the biblical record (Galatians 1:21-2:1). Life humbled Moses, yet God did not waste those forty years in the wilderness. His experience while leading sheep in Sinai prepared him to lead God's people. The places and problems he faced in that wilderness prepared him to lead God's people through that same wilderness. So, if you find yourself in a wilderness time in your life, remember that God will not waste your struggles. He will use your hard times to hone your faith and prepare you for his future!

Today's Prayer

Give me strength, O Lord, not to waver or quit in my wilderness times. Give me courage and faith to keep following you no matter where you lead. I commit to faithfulness and courage while I depend on your Holy Spirit to empower and transform me. I ask and pledge this in the powerful name of Jesus. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Luke 1:80, 3:1-6
  • Acts 9:17-31; Galatians 1:11-2:1

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Illustration

Illustration of Acts 7:29-30 NLT — [Stephen continued talking about Moses in his defense before the council:] When Moses heard that [his killing of an Egyptian was known among the Israelites], he fled the country and lived as a foreigner in the land of Midian. There his two sons were born.
"Forty years later, in the desert near Mount Sinai, an angel appeared to Moses in the flame of a burning bush."

About This Devotional

Unstoppable! is a one-year devotional guide through the book of Acts. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage, a reflection and a prayer. The reflection opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges one to live for Jesus.

Unstoppable! is written by Phil Ware.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.