September 03, 2007

Under New Management

Acts 9:1-19

"This man is my chosen instrument to carry my name before the Gentiles ..." Acts 9:15


Many people measure their worth by their work. They clock in long hours at the office, at the factory or job site, or at home raising children. But what does our work say about who we are?

Saul had to reassess his work in light of Jesus' plan for his life. Saul had been out to get rid of Christians. As a devout Jew, he felt they were a threat to the true religion of God's people. He wanted to destroy anyone who followed the new religion founded by Jesus. Saul believed it was his mission to stamp out this competition.

God redirected Saul to become the chosen instrument of the Lord Jesus. Saul would suffer greatly as he championed this new message. But in spite of that, Saul proclaimed himself a disciple for Jesus, working under new management.

Saul was called to bring the message of forgiveness and grace to the very people he had hated. The first words of Ananias to Saul are significant: "Brother Saul, the Lord ... has sent me so that you may ... be filled with the Holy Spirit." Through Ananias, Saul was commissioned for new work.

It took a crisis on the road to point Saul in a new direction for his life work. As you think about this, evaluate the relationship between your work and identity, and reassess how your life work brings praise to God.

<p>Jesus, you care about the kind of person I am and how my work benefits others in your kingdom. Help me to enter into your rest as I work for your kingdom to come. </p><p>Amen.</p>

About the author — Reginald Smith

Dr. Reginald Smith is senior pastor at Roosevelt Park Community Christian Reformed Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he has served for seventeen years. He has also served as a pastor in Paterson, New Jersey. He and his wife, Sharon, have three daughters, Janelle, Katrina, and Mariah.

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