You are on the team and you have a part to play

In this next parable, we read about how an angel of the Lord gives a mere mortal instructions, strange instructions, and Philip, the mortal follows the angel’s lead.


26-28 Later God’s angel spoke to Philip: “At noon today I want you to walk over to that desolate road that goes from Jerusalem down to Gaza.” He got up and went. He met an Ethiopian eunuch coming down the road. The eunuch had been on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem and was returning to Ethiopia, where he was minister in charge of all the finances of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians. He was riding in a chariot and reading the prophet Isaiah. Acts 8:26-28 MSG


Back in the day, men were castrated under the misguided and brutal assumption that they would be more attentive servants. “Candice” was historically the traditional title of the queen mother, responsible for performing the secular duties of the reigning king - who was thought to be too sacred for such activities.


Please reread that last paragraph. Breathe. Think about what was just said there. If you have the stomach to proceed and you have stopped laughing or crying, depending upon your personality, at the utter ridiculousness of those two historical perspectives, I will continue.

My point is this: look at what effort God is making to reach out to the eunuch. A man of shame, a man who literally has had his manhood removed. Imagine all he has lost, and yet he is valued by God. Notice also that the angel goes to Philip and asks him to participate as an emissary in the “running of the father” toward the eunuch.


Many times we expect to receive a strange call like this from God via angels or texts, burning bushes or according to a new tv show - by God friending us on facebook. We fret over knowing and doing the will of the Father - as we should. But this kind of movement across the heavens to earth with an incredible specific request needs to be seen for what it is - unusual. Not everyone will be summoned in such a direct manner. Most of us will be expected to make obvious choices that sit right in front of us concerning God’s will. Like be kind to each other; pay our bills on time; try not to gossip; do our best not to judge self or others. Stuff like that which is neither grand nor sexy, but is as important as anything God asked Philip to do.


God has a team. We are part of his team. That’s quite lovely. Are you participating or sitting on the sidelines? Are you willing and able to take small next right steps? As obvious and simple as they may seem, sometimes those are quite difficult to accomplish.