I would like to exhort you this day using a particular character in the Bible. She is a personality used in the Bible to portray a woman who has received the gospel. This woman is called Lydia of Philippi (Acts 16:14- 15). She was a woman who was exposed to the gospel, and to whom the Lord gave a trusting heart towards the sent one and the gospel. She had a search, a desire in her heart for God. Every one of us at one point had that search in our hearts, when we realized there was something more we needed to know about God.
When Lydia received the gospel there are two prominent characteristics she showed:
- Openness of heart
Because Lydia worshiped God, the Lord opened her heart to pay attention to the message. Whenever you agree with the gospel, it is God who opened your heart. You can never open your heart of yourself. I have learnt that no matter how much you try to show others the efficacy of the gospel, of your own efforts, it takes the Lord Himself to open their hearts. It is the Lord that opens your heart to receive the revelation of the gospel and He alone continues to do His good work. It is your responsibility to allow Him to work within you the purpose for which He opened your heart to receive the gospel.
- A Heart that Trusts
Because her heart was opened by God, Lydia began to see and trust every word that proceeded from the mouth of the Apostle Paul. She began to see that trusting him will make her life different. Many women are in the Church today without trust. The characteristics of someone without trust is that they would want nothing to do with the sent one or with what the gospel is all about.
It is out of the trust in the Apostle Paul that Lydia believed. There is no believing without trusting in the one God has sent to shepherd you. There is a relationship that leads to you believing without questioning. This trusts led to the manifestation of the words spoken by Apostle Paul in the life of Lydia.
Trust has fruits the same way as there are the fruits of the Spirit. When you trust someone, your husband, your mother, you expect words that come from their mouth to bring a transformation in your life. The fruits of trust is the desire to build a relationship with the one whom we trust and a mindfulness about the person’s work.
Lydia is the prototype New Testament woman whose eyes the Lord opened to prosper for the sake of the Gospel. She created a room for the Sent One in her heart and because she saw herself as privileged to receive the Sent One and to be a partaker in his mission, this attitude opened the blessing of God in her life. When you have a heart that is in the purpose of God and which is open, God opens your eyes to see the hidden riches of the Earth; you will have ideas that come supernaturally from God. I encourage you with the story of Lydia, who is the example that every New Testament woman should emulate.
In the words of my husband, Dr. Shawn Smith, the Sent One, “the Lord wants to raise in the heart of women trust for the things of the kingdom and how He has assigned His work to go. We have not even scratched the surface of the riches that God has in store for all of those whose hearts are open to the revelation of the gospel.”