Deferred Longings

Romans 15:22-26 The Apostle Paul has long had a desire to go to Rome to visit the Christians there. He believes now that the time has finally come when he will be able to do so. What are the things that have hindered him from going to Rome before now? What is the corollary of every decision or choice we make in life? How is Paul's experience similar to King David's desire to build a temple, or to some desires in our own lives? What does our faithfulness to the exercise of our spiritual gifts and ministry necessarily imply about doing some other things for God? How did Paul's proposed visit to Rome now fit into God's plan for Paul's ministry? Why did Paul wish to go to Spain? What new difficulties did ministry in Spain present that Paul had not encountered before? How could the Romans help Paul in this? What is significant about the word "help" in this passage, and how does it relate to our own involvement in the missionary outreach of the church? What still stood in the way of Paul's going immediately to Rome and Spain? (60 min)