Chapter-a-Day Acts 20

Fluoxetine (Prozac), an SSRI
Fluoxetine (Prozac), an SSRI (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“But my life is worth nothing to me unless I use it for finishing the work assigned me by the Lord Jesus—the work of telling others the Good News about the wonderful grace of God.” Acts 20:24 (NLT)

It is a depressing thing not to have purpose in life. We were created for a purpose. When we are blind to or unaware of that purpose, it can slowly erode the health of our soul. Days become burdensome. Existence feels meaningless. At that point, I’ve observed that we either seek after endless distraction and pleasure to medicate and cover the growing sense of emptiness, or we fall into despair.

I watched a recent television news program that cited statistics showing well over half of all Americans are on antidepressant medication. We are in arguably the wealthiest, most well provisioned and stable nation on the face of the Earth where we recognize everyone’s  right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. And yet, a majority of us are so depressed we are taking prescription medication for it.

Contrast that with Paul who, despite a terrible problem with his eyesight, worked the menial job as a tentmaker so that he could frugally travel from town to town sharing with others the Message of Jesus. He was ceaselessly harassed, beaten, imprisoned, shipwrecked and threatened. He was constantly on the run from those who sought to kill him. Multiple attempts were made on his life. And, his soul experienced a fullness of meaning, purpose, and joy.

Somehow, in our “pursuit of happiness,” I believe we have misplaced our understanding of what gives life true and motivating worth, meaning, and purpose.

One thought on “Chapter-a-Day Acts 20”

  1. 38 They were sad most of all because he had said that they would never see him again.

    It’s an obscure verse to pick I know. Our house has a heavy heart this week. Our host-daughter will be leaving next Tuesday and she has become part of the family this past year. It’s unspoken, but I know the thoughts of this verse are in our minds; will we ever see each other again? We already are beginning to plan to visit her next Spring Break at the University of Alabama, but those plans aren’t in stone. So, she admitted to us last night that she doesn’t like the idea of leaving and to please give her grace if she is quiet and distant this week. We told her that it’s OK to be sad about leaving (she doesn’t want to show that), and that we are sad too, but until next Tues is behind us, who knows what the emotions of the week have in store. Thank you Jesus for her influence in our lives and we pray that we have influenced hers.

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