THE MACEDONIAN CALL
In Acts 16 it is made crystal clear that the Holy Spirit meticulously spearheaded the evangelistic endeavors of the Early Church. When they desired to go into Asia, Paul and his evangelist team were forbidden by the Holy Spirit to do so! For me, the lesson remains quite clear and simple – if we would allow Him, He will diligently supervise our every move. He will direct us even today during this perilous, unrelenting pandemic and times of great uncertainty and restlessness. Evidently he will close doors that need to be closed and open those doors that need to be opened according to His divine will and counsel.
The Holy Spirit disallowed their evangelistic efforts into Asia at this time. He then further instructed them not to go into Bithynia (Acts 16:6,7). As they journeyed towards Troas the apostle then received the green light from the Holy Spirit to proceed into Macedonia with the gospel message. Acts 16:9 states, “And a vision appeared to Paul in the night; There stood a man of Macedonia, and prayed him saying, come over into Macedonia, and help us.”
We note however that in spite of the restraints and not having clear leadership from God at first, Paul kept on going and moving. He went about fulfilling the great commission, counting and trusting in the Lord to give positive directions at the right time. The point is, sometimes, He will tell us No; sometimes He will tell us, Wait, and sometimes, Yes, but nothing should hinder us from fulfilling the great commission. As we remain intent on going, the specifics will come. He will send a vision! He will give us insight and direction as to what to do next and where to go.
It is undeniable that we continue to draw inspiration and illumination from our archetype – the Early Church. As they sought divine direction it wasn’t long before God sent a vision in the night, directing their next steps of missionary expansion and exploration. We remain encouraged that even in the darkness of present circumstances He, the Almighty God, will send a vision in the night to direct and order the next steps of this pilgrim church of the Northeast and Bermuda.
In the meantime, we keep seeking and prayerfully waiting until the Lord gives specific instructions as to where next. May we never be distracted from being the missionary agents and society He called us to be, especially in these cataclysmic times of this twenty-first century. Let us always be ready to answer the Macedonian call!
Leroy V. Greenaway
Presiding Bishop – Northeast Region
August 29, 2020
In collaboration with our District Overseers, the Church of God of Prophecy submits to the wisdom of continuing to ‘Shelter in Place’ for the safety and protection of the flock. This is to be observed until further notice and the present virus is better contained. Should the need arise to meet, we are advised to meet in groups of no more than 10, while we strictly observe the protocols of social distancing, wearing of masks and aggressive sanitizing of our hands and surfaces frequently touched.
Please let us patiently observe these practices to keep each other safe and alive. We are reminded that we are indeed our brother’s keeper. Stay home! Stay Healthy! Stay Hopeful! We shall soon get through this! Premature re-openings of our churches seem not to be the wisest way to go at this point. Let us continue to pray, caring for each other and staying connected.
Leroy V. Greenaway
Regional, Presiding Bishop — Northeast Region