by Terri Wagner
From Jerusalem to Rome, Paul's saga is one of someone doing everything right but seeing everything go wrong. Paul comes back to Jerusalem to report on his missionary efforts, which were considerable, and James says well uh really buddy you've made the Christian Jews really mad about this whole give-up-the-Mosaic-law already. So uh well would you submit to a purification ceremony from the Mosaic law and then go to the temple.
And Paul says sure anything that will help, although he knew was a pointless ritual. He does it, and wala, he gets to talk to the Sanhedrin. A fight breaks out, and the Romans are called and take Paul off to whip him. He throws up his hands (now as an American I totally get this part) and says btw you should know I'm a Roman citizen. So he's in jail when his nephew comes and says 40 guys have resolved not to eat or drink until they kill you and uh that's tonight uncle. So Paul tells his jailer. They trade him off to Felix who lets him languish in a two-year home arrest situation. Finally Paul goes to Rome after of course a shipwreck.
What did Paul do when everything seem to be going wrong? He kept doing the right thing. He wrote letters that became parts of the New Testament, he held church meetings and missionary discussions. He kept keeping on.
There's a great lesson in there for us as writers. In the midst of the block, the chores, the storm, keep keeping on or in our case keep on writing.
And who says you can't combine Gospel Doctrine lessons to real life!