Meet my friend Cary Hughes! Watch this 13 Second ESPN Video!
Yep, that’s him in the yellow. Now, if you think he is LSU football crazy…. he is!
But, he is even more crazy about the gospel!
“I sense the Spirit of God leading us….” If you’ve ever heard this phrase from someone close to you, you might immediately go back to the very moment you heard it spoken. If you’re like me, you wrestle with discerning the Spirit’s lead while praying through a life changing decision……like moving.
How does the gospel give us a foundation to an important decision, such as moving? I’m glad you asked!
The apostle Paul was deeply in tune with the Spirit’s leading and moving him.
Acts 20:24 “But I do not account my life of any value nor as precious to myself, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.”
If you’re like me, your shouting “Amen!” May my life testify to the gospel of God’s marvelous grace! But, what is the context of Acts 20:24? Luke notes that Paul is declaring the work God did in and through him at Ephesus and is now, “going to Jerusalem….constrained by the Spirit”.
Paul only had one option: be obedient to his Spirit-led constraint….for the furtherance of the gospel….and for the glory of God. All while knowing affliction & imprisonment awaited him (Acts 20:23).
Our story of moving can be summed up in those four words: Constrained by the Spirit.
My wife (Laura) and I were living in Birmingham, AL. Our lives were…. comfortable.
- Good jobs
- Happily married three + years
- Ministries we were involved in – going well
- I was working a full time job with a law firm
- Pastoring part time with my father in the ministry, Anton Fourie
- Laura was teaching piano and voice to thirty students whom she deeply loved
- Close relationships with people in our church
- God was doing wonderful things for his glory
- Our lives were satisfied in the work of the gospel in and through our marriage
Then the Lord presented us with an opportunity in Melbourne, FL. Melbourne? I thought that was in Australia? Where is Melbourne? Add another hundred or so questions to that list, and our journey in prayer began: “Father, are you leading us to Melbourne?”
If you’ve ever moved out of state, you know the process can be incredibly stressful, both physically and spiritually. So many things to consider! Providing for your family, schools, housing, job, etc… Then, there are the minuscule things like trying to decide what items need to go to the thrift store. But, have you ever considered the most vital aspect of moving?
“Lord Jesus, how will the gospel be furthered in our new home?”
With all of the questions pertaining to moving, the gospel is the MOST vital aspect in the new place God is leading you or your family.
1.) What gospel work does the Lord desire to do through you? Maybe a new coworker that you’ve had conversations with and sense the Lord wanting to lead these people to himself? Perhaps it’s reaching out to family or a stranger. Although we didn’t know much about Melbourne, we sensed in prayer that it was a place the Lord wanted to use us to lead the lost to him.
2.) How does the Lord want to continue the work of the gospel in your new local church? Research the area for local churches before moving. Is there a gospel-centered, Christ-exalting church that believes in the sufficiency of the Word? Wherever the Lord leads, how will you allow God’s work in and through you to bear fruit with fellow brothers and sisters in Christ?
3.) Do you have a strong sense that the Spirit is leading? Like Paul, are you constrained by the Spirit to go?
If the Spirit is leading, if you are constrained…. go for the sake of the gospel!
I’d love to invite you to be a part of the gospel work God is doing at Grace Community Church in Melbourne. We desire Christ-exalting worship, gospel-centered preaching, and a community passionate about pursuing his glory in every area of life. If you are searching for a church home, we would LOVE to see you on a Sunday morning or in one of our community groups on a Wednesday night!