Vision brings new understanding, like turning on a lamp in a dark room at night. Pray that God will bring new vision - and new understanding - to you as you consider the scripture and wait for insight.

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We sailed from Troas straight for Samothrace and came to Neapolis the following day. From there we went to Philippi, a city of Macedonia’s first district and a Roman colony. We stayed in that city several days. On the Sabbath we went outside the city gate to the riverbank, where we thought there might be a place for prayer. We sat down and began to talk with the women who had gathered. One of those women was Lydia, a Gentile God-worshipper from the city of Thyatira, a dealer in purple cloth. As she listened, the Lord enabled her to embrace Paul’s message. Once she and her household were baptized, she urged, “Now that you have decided that I am a believer in the Lord, come and stay in my house.” And she persuaded us.

Acts 16:11-15
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There is the river again. Interesting things happen by rivers. I am interested that as they went to find the "place of prayer" that only women had gathered there. Lydia was a wealthy woman noted by her dealing in purple cloth. Purple was the color of royalty. It takes us to the memory that, just a few chapters before, the Romans had put a purple robe on Jesus to mock his role as "King of the Jews."

She listens eagerly, moved by the Holy Spirit, and decides to let God make a home in her life and in her house. In fact, her entire household is baptized. Immediately the house becomes a home as Jesus moves in and she offers holy hospitality to Paul and his crew. She "urges" and "persuades" them. She is acting as God’s advocate, making a place for them to stay while spreading the good news.

The point is simple. All of us need the redeeming power of Jesus – poor and rich. We can influence our local community through our act of faith, as Lydia helps her whole household be baptized. And through our simple acts of care or giving or hospitality, we can affect the entire world, all in the strong name of Jesus.

David Burroughs
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God, help me to be open to you in new ways. Help me to be able to influence those near me and support the influence of those around the world. Amen.

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Be Thou my Vision, O Lord of my heart;
Naught be all else to me, save that Thou art -
Thou my best thought, by day or by night,
Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light.

Ancient Irish hymn

David Burroughs

David Burroughs is the president of Passport Camps, which produces He was on the design team for Following the Star in 2001, where d365 was first dreamed into reality. He lives in Birmingham, Alabama with his wife Colleen. They have two awesome children in college.

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