What motivates you? What is your mission?
Keep in mind, Paul says these words just after condemning anyone who spoke against Jesus. He had just called God’s curse on anyone who preached (and thus followed) any news other than the good news of Jesus Christ. According to Paul, such people should be condemned to hell for exchanging the goodness of Christ for anything else in the world.
Paul was also the same man who came to understand that his mission in life was to live for Jesus, not for men. As a Pharisee, he had zealously undertaken the task of rooting out “The Way” and destroying it. Our first glimpse of Paul (then Saul) was at the death of Stephen, one of Jesus’ ‘outer rim’ of followers; he became the first Christian martyr. As the Jews were stoning Stephen, “Saul was there, giving approval to his death.” On the road to Damascus, Jesus changed Saul’s life. He gave him a new name, a new purpose, and the will to live for something better than himself.
So, I’ll ask you again: what motivates you? What is your mission in life? If you know what that is, are you working on that mission for the approval of the Lord or the approval of those around you? Be honest with yourself. I’ve been caught up in “me” before. In fact, “me” is someone with whom I struggle every day. In a very different context, Herman Melville put it best: “to the last, I grapple with thee.” Me will fight me every step of my life to get his time in the spotlight and his pat on the back.
Do you struggle with ‘me’ in your mission? Does ‘me’ try to get you to focus on him/her instead of keeping your eyes on the prize of Christ? If you’ve struggled against ‘me’, don’t spend too much time asking why or obsessing over the wrongs you’ve said or done. Face them, own them, confess them, then let go of them. Turn them over to Christ and let Him take away the burden.
Once you’ve done that, lace up your boots and get back in the fight. Your mission is to live your life for Jesus, using the talents, abilities, words, and choices He puts on your path every day. Some days we’ll be Saul, and we’ll say and do terrible things that require more repentance. On others we’ll fight the good fight, like Paul, and do what we do as servants of Christ.
For further reading: Acts 8:1, Romans 2:29, Galatians 1:11
Lord, I want to be only Your servant. Encourage me, equip me, strengthen me for my mission today.
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