Settled and Scattered

by Marilyn Ehle

“…you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.� Acts 1:8

Beach balcony chairsMost women find great comfort in what might be called “settledness�—all moving boxes quickly unpacked, pictures on the walls, furniture in place. For them, to contemplate the idea of uprooting family again is not only unpleasant, but fearful.

Other women—perhaps a minority?—can hardly wait to see what new people, events, houses lie around the next corner. When their job, or their husband’s, requires a move, they march ahead with enthusiasm and vigor.

Theologian John Calvin encouraged Christians to be both “trekkers and settlers.� He envisioned Christians moving with determination into population centers, commerce and education to influence all of society and then—as God instructed His people centuries earlier—“Build houses and settle down; plant gardens…marry and have sons and daughters…seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you…� (Jeremiah 29:5-7)

First century Christians were scattered because of persecution. The apostle Peter reminded them that even in the midst of that danger, they were chosen by God and that their faith would result in “praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.�

We experience a variety of seasons in our lives—sometimes we are called to be trekkers and other times we are settlers. Our call as Christians is to be always alert to the whispers of God and be ready to move—or stay. Wherever God places us, we can be confident that His Spirit will supply our needs so that we can be a blessing to those around us.

How grateful I am, Father that my grandparents dared to be trekkers as they risked so much to settle here in this country. Help me express that same willingness to be your person in whatever place you call me to—for Kingdom purposes so much greater than safety and security.

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