Paul went by land to Assos, where he had arranged for us to join him, while we traveled by ship. He joined us there, and we sailed together to Mitylene. The next day we sailed past the island of Kios. The following day we crossed to the island of Samos, and a day later we arrived at Miletus.
Paul had decided to sail on past Ephesus, for he didn't want to spend any more time in the province of Asia. He was hurrying to get to Jerusalem, if possible, in time for the Festival of Pentecost. But when we landed at Miletus, he sent a message to the elders of the church at Ephesus, asking them to come and meet him.
— Acts 20:13-17 NLT
Paul was in a hurry to get to Jerusalem before the Festival of Pentecost. Pentecost was the anniversary of the birth of the church by the power of the Holy Spirit.* He also wanted to get to Jerusalem quickly with the gift given by the Gentile churches for the Jewish brothers and sisters in Christ.* However, loving on the people and leaders of the churches Paul helped to start in the Roman province of Asia was more important to him than his own agenda.** Love for his brothers and sisters in Christ was always more important than his personal plans! In the crush of all we feel that we need to do for God, we must never rush past the God-thing to do: Love each other!
Lord Jesus, I thank you for being an example to me about what love is and what love does. Forgive me when I become so task-driven that I neglect loving my brothers and sisters as I should. I ask you, Holy Spirit, to convict me when I make my plans more important than the needs of a brother or sister. Father, I want to love those who are your children by faith, just as you do. Please help me as I seek to live out this priority in my life. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.