1 Timothy 1.12-17
Gratitude for God's Mercy
12I give thanks to Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength for my work. I thank him for considering me worthy and appointing me to serve him,13 even though in the past I spoke evil of him and persecuted and insulted him. But God was merciful to me because I did not yet have faith and so did not know what I was doing.14And our Lord poured out his abundant grace on me and gave me the faith and love which are ours in union with Christ Jesus.15This is a true saying, to be completely accepted and believed: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners. I am the worst of them,16but God was merciful to me in order that Christ Jesus might show his full patience in dealing with me, the worst of sinners, as an example for all those who would later believe in him and receive eternal life.17To the eternal King, immortal and invisible, the only God—to him be honor and glory forever and ever! Amen.
Let’s begin by looking back to where the incredible internal change started. Let’s begin by remembering what God had done in us. Let’s recall where we’ve been and how the ultimate change maker brought us to Himself.
Some of us had a radical conversion. Some of us put our faith in Christ at a young age, without a lot of hype. For some it may have been more of a process in which we realized the depth of our sin and God’s amazing grace later.
As we look back, let’s spend this time thanking God for saving us and calling us to be leaders.
In today’s reading, the apostle Paul is in prison and he’s equipping and encouraging his apprentice, Timothy. As he does, Paul shares something personal. He gets to the core of his identity. He remembers his past as an enemy of Christ. Paul calls himself the number one sinner. He also celebrates what Jesus has done in and through him as a follower and a leader. He does it with humility. His life is an example of God’s patience and grace. If God loves him, and if God can use him, God can use anybody.
God has brought incredible internal change to our lives. We are His children and He has called us to be change makers.
As we consider our past, let’s follow in Paul’s footsteps and thank God for His work in us and through us.
Father, thank You for sending Jesus to die for people like the apostle Paul and me. You know where I’ve been and what I’ve done. Thank You for loving me so much, You poured out your abundant grace on me. Thank You for reminding me of who I was and who I am in Christ. Thank You for the radical internal change You’ve made in my life. Help me to remember what You’ve done and how You’re the One who has called me to be a leader. Thank You for changing me and calling me to serve You. It’s an honor to serve You. Amen
As ministry gets hectic and intense what positive aspects of your conversion and call to leadership do you tend to forget? How can that inform the way you lead others?