We all know that Paul was one of the greatest apostles that ever lived. He wrote many of the books in the New Testament. But, that wasn’t always the case. Before Paul met Jesus, he wasn’t that great of a person. He was a Pharisee and killed many, many innocent Christians. One day he got permission from the high priest to go to Damascus and arrest anyone who claimed to be a Christian. BUT, on the way, a bright light from heaven shone around him. It was Jesus. He told him to go into the city and that someone will tell him what to do. That someone was a disciple named Ananias. The Lord spoke to Ananias in a vision and told him that Paul was a chosen vessel that was going to bear His name and suffer for His name’s sake. And that is just what Paul did until the day he died.
Acts 9:1-6 (NKJV) – 1Then Saul, still breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest 2 and asked letters from him to the synagogues of Damascus, so that if he found any who were of the Way, whether men or women, he might bring them bound to Jerusalem. 3 As he journeyed he came near Damascus, and suddenly a light shone around him from heaven. 4 Then he fell to the ground, and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?” 5 And he said, “Who are You, Lord?” Then the Lord said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. It is hard for you to kick against the goads.” 6 So he, trembling and astonished, said, “Lord, what do You want me to do?”Then the Lord said to him, “Arise and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.”
Acts 9:15-16 (NKJV) -” 15 But the Lord said to him (Ananias), “Go, for he (Paul) is a chosen vessel of Mine to bear My name before Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel.16 For I will show him how many things he must suffer for My name’s sake.”
Notice that Paul didn’t go looking for Jesus…. Jesus came looking for him! Jesus chose him. Paul wasn’t a great person the day he met Jesus. I mean he killed people because they were Jesus followers. BUT, God had a plan for him. God changed his life in an instant.
And guess what? God chose you too. Before you were even born, before the world was formed, God chose you to be one of his children. It’s nothing you did or could ever do.
No matter what you have done in the past, God chose you and He can change your life in an instant, just like He did for Paul.
Jeremiah 1:5 (CSB) – 5 I chose you before I formed you in the womb; I set you apart before you were born….
Ephesians 1:4-6 (CSB) – 4 For He chose us in Him, before the foundation of the world, to be holy and blameless in love before Him. 5 He predestined us to be adopted as sons through Jesus Christ for Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, 6 to the praise of His glorious grace that He lavished on us in the Beloved One.
John 15:16 (CSB) – 16 You did not choose me, but I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce fruit and that your fruit should remain, so that whatever you ask the Father in My name, He will give you.
Now this is the part that gets most of us (including me). We will respond to God calling us into fellowship with Him, we will pray occasionally, and read the Bible a few times a week, then that’s it. But, God didn’t call us to sit on our butts. He called us to do some work for Him. It’s so easy for us to say that God could never use us because of what we have done in our past. But just take a look at Paul again; I am sure what you have done doesn’t even compare to what he did before God called him. The world may tell you that you’re insignificant, weak, not smart enough, or worthless; but God chose you. He chose you to make a difference. He chooses those who the world views as weak so that He can get the glory. It’s not by our power that we can make a difference in other people’s lives; it’s by His power alone. It’s all through Him and for Him.
1 Corinthians 1:26-31 (CSB) – 26 Brothers and sisters, consider your calling: Not many were wise from a human perspective, not many powerful, not many of noble birth. 27 Instead, God has chosen what is foolish in the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen what is weak in the world to shame the strong. 28 God has chosen what is insignificant and despised in the world—what is viewed as nothing—to bring to nothing what is viewed as something, 29 so that no one may boast in His presence. 30 It is from Him that you are in Christ Jesus, who became wisdom from God for us—our righteousness, sanctification, and redemption, 31 in order that, as it is written: Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.
I have a calling, you have a calling, every child of God has a calling. In order for the body of Christ to work properly, each member needs to fulfill that calling. 1st Corinthians 12 and Romans 12:4-8 both tell us that the body of Christ has many parts (which are you and me) but not all parts have the same function. These callings are also known as spiritual gifts. We all have different gifts. Every part needs to do its job so we can uplift one another and bring glory to God.
Your gift may be something you’re afraid of doing. Like myself, I feel called to teach other women but I am absolutely terrified of talking in front of people. But it’s not from my own ability that I am able to teach, God enables me to teach through His power. The same God that chose you to be His child and gave you a calling in life, will also equip you to fulfill that calling.
Hebrews 13:20-21 (CSB) – 20 Now may the God of peace… 21 equip you with everything good to do His will, working in us what is pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.
If you don’t know what your gift is or don’t know how to use it properly, I recommend fervently seeking God in prayer and studying His Word every day. Not by just reading the Bible randomly, but by earnestly studying it. Don’t come to God out of pride, demanding a specific gift so that others will look up to you. Come to Him humbly, asking for whatever gift He sees fit for you, so that you can be a blessing to someone else and bring glory to His Name. He knows our hearts. If He knows that we genuinely want to bring glory to His name through our gift, He will reveal it to us and equip us to use it.
Click here to see a list of different gifts mentioned in the Bible. If you scroll down on this page, it will give you definitions for each gift.
If you have any comments or questions, please feel free to leave them below!