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Provoked

What is it that gets your blood boiling? There may be many things for some and for others nothing really gets you fired up. There are those who get provoked by things like shopping carts just being left in the parking lot and not put in a corral.  Then there are people who get provoked when they see people being mistreated, social injustice, or political corruption.

I suppose we all have those things that can push our button and send us off to the moon. In my devotions this morning in Acts chapter 17 I was reading about the Apostle Paul. Paul left Silas and Timothy to head to Athens. While he was waiting on his friends to catch up to him, he began to walk the city of Athens and he noticed idols everywhere. Acts 17:16 tells us that his spirit was being provoked within him. Seeing all these false gods people were putting their trust in bothered him greatly.

Now the difference between Paul and most of us is that when we are provoked in the spirit, we just kind of grumble or we post on Facebook, tweet, snapchat, or whatever our mode of venting may be. Rarely are we so provoked in our spirit that we are willing to really do anything about it.

Paul took all he could stands, he could stands no more (hope you get the reference and don’t just think its bad grammar). He went directly to the synagogues and the marketplace and began to reason with the God-fearing Jews and Gentiles about what was going on around them. This began to stir up the rest of the community and it gave Paul a great audience to speak to about the hope that is in Jesus Christ. As we read this text, we see that not very many really took what Paul had to say to heart, but some did.

The point is not the results, but that Paul could not just sit back and see people continue down a path of destruction without trying to do something. Maybe what our community needs more of are provoked Christians that don’t just post from behind a desk but are willing to make the stand and speak truth to people face to face; to get uncomfortable for the things that are godly provocations.