27” Now in these days’ prophets came down from Jerusalem to Antioch. 28 And one of them named Agabus stood up and foretold by the Spirit that there would be a great famine over all the world (this took place in the days of Claudius). 29 So the disciples determined, every one according to his ability, to send relief to the brothers living in Judea. 30 And they did so, sending it to the elders by the hand of Barnabas and Saul.” (Acts 11:27–30)
Whatever service you are presently giving to people, and before the Lord, may not be all which he intends for you to do. You may want to serve Him more, with the abilities, spiritual gifts, and talents which He gave you. However, you currently find yourself limited by circumstances from doing more for the Lord than you desire.
Don’t become frustrated. Don’t become angry, either at other people, your current situation, or even at God. He knows your heart and knows your qualifications and abilities. Remember, He gave you your capabilities to be used for His glory (I Peter 4:10-11).
Agabus was one of the Jerusalem prophets, who would later be involved in Paul’s ministry who years later played an important part in Paul’s ministry (21:10–11). He prophesied that a famine was going to occur. Several ancient historians such as Tacitus [Annals XI.43], Josephus [Antiquities 5], and Suetonius [Claudius 18]) affirm the occurrence of great famines in Israel around A.D. 45–46. The famine was so significant that it reached beyond just Israel. It also occurred during the reign of Claudius. Emperor of Rome (A.D. 41–54).
Luke summarizes the conclusion of this relief effort in Acts 12:24-25. The Gospel continues to spread. The Word of God continues to increase. At the same time, Barnabas and Saul completed their mission delivering much need famine relief to Israel. They returned from Jerusalem to Antioch. Along with them is a young man named John Mark.
Even though Saul would later be known as the Apostle Paul and establish many churches and lead people to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ, he was not unwilling to serve the Lord as a deliverer of much needed relief to the believers in Judea due to the famine.
You may not be serving the Lord where you would prefer, but you can serve the Lord where you are needed. Many times where you need to serve is more important than where you want to serve.
Soli deo Gloria!