Saturday, May 17, 2008

Ephesians 3:1-7

"For this reason I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for the sake of you Gentiles --

"Surely you have heard about the administration of God's grace that was given to me for you, that is, the mystery made known to me by revelation, as I have already written briefly. In reading this, then, you will be able to understand my insight into the mystery of Christ, which was not made known to men in other generations as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to God's holy apostles and prophets. This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus.

"I became a servant of this gospel by the gift of God's grace given me
through the working of his power." NIV

Paul has always fascinated me. He is a man of extreme passion. When he was persecuting the Christians, he did it wholeheartedly. He was driven to stop them in any way. Now, as a follower of Christ, he has the same passion but for the good. Here he is in prison because of his faith and writing to the church in Ephesus to encourage them in their faith. This man is unstoppable. He is beaten, imprisoned, cast out, ship-wrecked and like the Energizer bunny keeps marching on. How is that? His spiritual battery IS the power of God. Paul gets it. In verse 7 he calls himself a servant, and Paul takes his job very seriously. No half-hearted, lazy, working grunt attitude in him. He is blessed to be a servant of the Most High, no matter what that means.

We all are just as much servants of the Most High as Paul was. Our calling is not for comfort and power in this world. We were made for another place -- eternity with Him -- and we need to be about our Father's business while we are here. It's hard to keep perspective with so many things to focus on in any given day. We become very myopic. My prayer when I'm getting bogged down in the details of life is, "Lord, pull me higher. I need to see a birds-eye view to get a better perspective." Do I do it perfectly? Absolutely not. But I am His servant, imperfect and flawed, and I will continue by His power to work to do it better. Lord and Master, I'm here to serve You. Show me each day how to do that better no matter what.

Further Thoughts:

  1. Is anyone too far gone to be saved by Christ? (Read Paul's story. Acts 7:59-8:3; 9:1-31)
  2. What is a servant? (Read a dictionary definition and find Scriptures on servant and serve.)
  3. List different ways you currently serve the Master. (Remember, serving God is not always through church-related activities. You can serve Him in anything you do as long as you are doing it for Him and His glory, not yours.
  4. Spend time today asking the Father how you can better serve Him. (Be ready. It's a dangerous question if you truly want an answer.)

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