“From ‘Worst’ to Faithfully Appointed.”


“I am grateful to Christ Jesus our Lord, who has strengthened me, because he judged me faithful and appointed me to his service.”  -1 Timothy 1:12

The man once named Saul, persecutor and murderer of Christ-followers has been redeemed.  Now, Christ’s ambassador, a humble servant renamed Paul writes to Timothy his protege and for all intense and purposes adopted son.  Paul is nearing the end of his life.  He knows that time is now running out for him.  He isn’t bitter.  He isn’t scorning and cursing his captors – Rome, instead he is making the most of his remaining time.   He writes this encouraging letter to Timothy as a father would lovingly pen words on a page to a son.  Paul considers himself the worst of sinners and even says son in his letter to Timothy.  

Is there regret from his previous life, before Christ cast his light of salvation on him on a dusty Damascus road?  Yes.  But has this regret stopped Paul from living for Christ alone?  No!  Though Paul considered himself the worst of sinners, he indicates to Timothy that Christ had also deemed him worthy of calling. 

What made Paul worthy?  Was it his own hard work and effort to be ‘good’?  No.  How can a killer of Christians now be considered worthy & faithful?  It becomes a matter of the heart.  What lives inside our hearts only we and God know.  What we feed on within out thought processes only we and God know.  Paul was convinced, and the evidence of his ministry results are apparent, that Christ had judged him faithful and appointed him to serve.  

What about us today? 

Do you feel worthy of being called by God?  Are you willing to serve Him wholeheartedly like Paul did?  We don’t need to have a theological degree to serve Him.  We don’t need to be highly educated to gather a towel around our waist and wash the feet of those around us for His glory.  We don’t need to be preachers like Billy Graham to share this message of hope to the world around us.  We just need to be faithful.  Christ Jesus can and will strengthen you as well, just as He did with Paul.  If we say ‘yes’ to His calling (whatever that calling looks like that enables us to serve Him) he will judge us faithful and then also appoint you as well to whatever task He needs you to serve Him in.  

You may consider yourself in your own minds to be the worst of sinners also.  You may think that God cannot forgive you for what you have done in your life…and you would be wrong!  Christ is willing to forgive you if only you will let Him.  When we open ourselves up to Him and His holy cleansing we will find love, grace and hope…we will find new life!  And in this new life, we too will be judged as faithful servants of the Most High.  

Are you willing today to trust Him?  Are you willing to allow Him into your life?  If you say yes to His calling on your life, watch out!  You will never be the same again!  Because the Apostle Paul said ‘yes’ to Christ many, many lives for changed including Timothy who did carry on in Paul’s footsteps.  Because Paul said ‘yes’ to Christ the very world was changed because of His testimony.  Today, this world needs more Pauls to boldly step up and say ‘yes’ to Christ…may you be a Paul today in your answer today!

-Just a thought.  


“Step up and Go!”


Jesus gathered them together.  The ‘twelve’ probably wondered what was next.  They had been with Him for a while.  They had witnessed miracles by His hand.  Been eye witnesses to the multitudes of people who came to hear Him teach.  Now Jesus called them to Him for some kind of closed door ‘huddle’.  “What would He say?” some of them wondered.  These disciples were still young men and in awe of their Rabbi.

They moved in close as Jesus looked into their faces and smiled.  His smile warmed them, made them feel accepted and loved.  Then He blessed them.  Any disciple would be honored to be blessed by their teacher.  Yet He went beyond the customary blessings.  He gave them authority.  With hands raised and face lifted up, Jesus granted them power and authority over all demons and diseases.  Then, He lowered His gaze and looked once more into their eyes.  He spoke to them and gave them instructions to go and preach the kingdom of God and to heal the sick.

Jesus sent them out to do what He had been doing.  They had been witnesses of His words and deeds and now the disciples were to go and emulate the Teacher.  There was a flutter in the stomach.  A tinge of nervousness in the air.  The young men had been instructed to go.  They had been instructed to preach and to heal.  A few wary looks were exchanged.  Someone coughed nervously.

Jesus wasn’t done though.  He gave them additional instructions;  “Take nothing for the journey, neither staff nor bag, nor bread, nor money…don’t even pack an extra tunic.” (Luke 9:3)

Jesus sent His disciples out with nothing yet everything that they would need.   He granted them a kind of authority only the Son of God could grant. They went and did as He had instructed.  Some most likely encountered strong resistance.  Others witnessed the mighty moving of God through their faithfulness.  Every disciple who was sent learned something in their ‘sending out.’

This on-the-field training of the disciples was a turning point for them.  They didn’t have it all  together yet.  But they went.  Jesus empowered them in their sending out.  He gave them what they needed most: authority and experience.

Still to this day Jesus is calling us out.  He is calling us to step up.  He wants to use us for His purposes and to preach the kingdom of God!  The authority is His, but the ability to go is ours.  Will you go where He sends you?  He doesn’t send us out empty handed, but He gives us what we need for the mission!  When you say ‘yes’ step up and go!  Don’t be afraid or fearful of what others might think…He is sending you because He believes in you!

“So they (the disciples) departed and went through the towns, preaching the gospel and healing everywhere.” (Luke 9:6)

A prayer chorus comes to mind:

“For thy mission make me holy, 

For thy glory make me thine, 

Sanctify each moment fully,

fill my life with love divine.”


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