November 19, 2017. Acts 9-10.
“Be careful what you put on the internet, because once it is there it never goes away.” You have probably heard that phrase in some form or another at least once in your lifetime. Back in biblical times news spread a little slower and yet still the reputation of Saul as a murderer of Christ followers. And yet the Lord chose him to become one of the greatest apostles. God can use any one despite their mistakes. God can use you.
It is important to remember this truth, not only as it applies to you but to others as well. It is so easy to hear about someone’s mistakes or to see them blasted online and then write them off as the worst. Who would you consider the most harmful person in our world today? Now imagine if the Lord was calling you to help minister to them because He had been working on their heart. That is exactly the position the Lord put Ananias in. He told Ananias to go and find Saul and help him. Ananias’ response was:
13 “Lord,” Ananias answered, “I have heard many reports about this man and all the harm he has done to your holy people in Jerusalem. 14 And he has come here with authority from the chief priests to arrest all who call on your name.”
But he obeyed.
Peter also faced a calling to minister with Gentiles who had been considered unclean.
28 He said to them: “You are well aware that it is against our law for a Jew to associate with or visit a Gentile. But God has shown me that I should not call anyone impure or unclean.
No sin is to great to be forgiven by God and no sinner is to evil to have their heart changed and used by God. You are forgiven and you are called. Remember though, that you are not the only one who can be forgiven and called. Do not hold someone’s past against their future ministries. Life is hard; it is messy and people mess up, bad. But that is the beauty of grace and a perfect Father who never abandons.