Bryan and I watched an exciting High School football semi-final game at PGE Stadium in Portland. We were excited to cheer for the Southridge Skyhawks, the team he helped manage last year. They played superbly, won their game and will play for the state championship. I imagine it must be a pretty heady feeling to win big and feel the love and adulation of adoring fans. Unfortunately, fame and fortune are all too fleeting. The need to be noticed and to be important lasts for a while until some new hero or star emerges.
Have you ever wondered whom God notices?
Acts 10:4—Looking intently at him, he became afraid and said, “What is it, lord?”The angel told him, “Your prayers and your acts of charity have come up as a memorial offering before God.
Cornelius was a Roman centurion who served with the Italian Regiment in the town of Caesarea (about 70 miles NW of Jerusalem). Besides being a good leader, the Bible tells us he was a devout and God-fearing man. He was also well respected by all the Jews who knew him (an amazing fact in that Jews routinely disdained Gentiles and especially Romans who occupied their land). Evidently he was not a man of prejudice. He worshiped the God of Abraham and may have adhered to many of the Jewish laws and practices. The Caesarean Jews noticed him and liked what they saw.
But what really captures my attention is what Luke tells us about Cornelius in the passage above. An angel relayed to him in person that he had God’s attention! God was pleased by his prayer life and his generosity to the poor. This man was so favored by the Almighty, that he literally became the conduit by which the gospel leaped from the Jews to the Gentiles. Acts 10 is a pivotal chapter in the book. God leads the Apostle Peter to violate Jewish law and enter the home of Cornelius where he, his family and close friends have assembled in obedience to God’s instructions. They embrace the good news Peter proclaims about Jesus and the Holy Spirit falls upon them confirming that God intended for Gentiles as well as Jews to be saved.
Heavenly notice for right living is profoundly important. When we know what pleases God and obey His will we are investing in what is eternal. So the next time you think about how nice it would be if someone would just take notice of you consider this. Pray for God’s will to be done here on earth. Pray for others. Give to the poor. We already know God is pleased with these actions. Something to think about . . . in reveration!
If you are rightly devoted to the Lord Jesus, you have reached the sublime height where no one ever thinks of noticing you, all that is noticed is that the power of God comes through you all the time.—Oswald Chambers in My Utmost For His Highest
©2006 Daniel York ARR. Reveration is the weekly devotional ministry of First Cause. If you would like to receive these devotionals go to www.firstcause.org and click on the “Click here to receive weekly devotionals” box. Unlimited permission to copy this devotional without altering text or profiteering is allowed subject to inclusion of this copyright notice.
Ecclesiastes 12:10-The Teacher sought to find delightful sayings and to accurately write words of truth. (Holman CSB)