Sunday, January 23, 2011

Acts 22

Paul replied, “I am a Jew and a citizen of Tarsus in Cilicia, which is an important city... Then Paul said, “I am a Jew, born in Tarsus, a city in Cilicia, and I was brought up and educated here in Jerusalem under Gamaliel. As his student, I was carefully trained in our Jewish laws and customs. I became very zealous to honor God in everything I did, just like all of you today. (Acts 21:39, 22:3)

God has each of us born into the families He desires, the place, the economic situation, the education, the nationality, etc.; none of it is by accident.  We may not ever see the reason for our particular circumstances; but He has us in place and in people on purpose...His purpose.  

We can see how all of these things came together for Paul...His great loyalty to his people, the protection of being a citizen of another country, the elite training of Gamaliel, his propensity to fervency...All of these situations and qualities made him Paul and they prepared him for the call of Christ.

Help me, God, to better appreciate who and how You have made me and where You have placed me.  I trust Your plans despite my feelings.  Please let me fulfill all that You have prepared for me.

But my life is worth nothing to me unless I use it for finishing the work assigned me by the Lord Jesus—the work of telling others the Good News about the wonderful grace of God. (Acts 20:24)

What blesses and challenges me is that all of the blessings and prestige that Paul had was nothing when Christ called to him on that Damascus road.  Paul repeatedly says that it is all about Jesus and none about him.  When the torture kicks in, he says it much more vehemently.  

May I be as passionate and prioritized as Paul for the things of Christ.  

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