We went on ahead to the ship and sailed for Assos, where we were going to take Paul aboard. He had made this arrangement because he was going there on foot. When he met us at Assos, we took him aboard and went on to Mitylene. The next day we set sail from there and arrived off Chios. The day after that we crossed over to Samos, andon the following day arrived at Miletus. Paul had decided to sail past Ephesus to avoid spending time in the province of Asia, for he was in a hurry to reach Jerusalem, if possible by the day of Pentecost. (Acts 20:13-16)
Paul had two goals. He wanted to be in Jerusalem by Pentecost. God had interrupted his plans to be there at Passover so he could spread the good news to more people on his third missionary journey. Paul’s second goal was to meet with the Ephesian elders.
In order to reach goals we need a plan. Paul limited his time to seven days in Troas and decided to not visit Ephesus in order to meet his first goal. To meet his second goal, Paul planned to stop in Miletus, fifteen miles from Ephesus and meet the elders there.
Luke doesn’t tell us that Paul prayed about his goals and plans, but we know he did. Otherwise, he wouldn’t have known it was his last chance to meet with the Ephesian elders in person.
God wants us to pray, set goals, and make plans like Paul did to maximize our accomplishments, generosity, and joy. The new year is a good time to begin. If God interrupts your plans to accomplish His will or teach you a lesson, thank Him and reschedule your week.
Father, I praise you for having plans to prosper me and give me hope and a future. Place them in my heart and mind. Make Your will mine. Help me set goals and make good use of my time. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.