Wednesday, September 25, 2013

the change agent

Acts 9:1 Meanwhile, Saul was uttering threats with every breath and was eager to kill the Lord's followers. So he went to the high priest. 2 He requested letters addressed to the synagogues in Damascus, asking for their cooperation in the arrest of any followers of the Way he found there. He wanted to bring them—both men and women—back to Jerusalem in chains.
3 As he was approaching Damascus on this mission, a light from heaven suddenly shone down around him. 4 He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, "Saul! Saul! Why are you persecuting me?"
5 "Who are you, lord?" Saul asked.
And the voice replied, "I am Jesus, the one you are persecuting! 6 Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do."
15 But the Lord said, "Go, for Saul is my chosen instrument to take my message to the Gentiles and to kings, as well as to the people of Israel. 16 And I will show him how much he must suffer for my name's sake."
Saul stayed with the believers in Damascus for a few days. 20 And immediately he began preaching about Jesus in the synagogues, saying, "He is indeed the Son of God!"
21 All who heard him were amazed. "Isn't this the same man who caused such devastation among Jesus' followers in Jerusalem?" they asked. "And didn't he come here to arrest them and take them in chains to the leading priests?"
There are times that we may become discouraged as we seem to see the moral fabric of our culture and our country and our families unravel. It can appear irreversible and unstoppable. But I don't accept that. Our God is the same One who took the fiercest human enemy of His Son and transformed him into the fiercest and most effective Apostle. When a person becomes saved, through the work of God, he is no longer in opposition to God or His church and he is now in alignment with the Lord. I believe the answer to our cultural ebb tide is prayer, presentation through example, and proclamation in word of that Gospel. Of all the messages that flood our air, internet and print...that is the one message that must take root to hold back erosion and build the cultural cornerstone upon. I think this is best illustrated in the life of Paul. Transformation of a culture begins with transformation of individuals!
Rob Smith

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