Devotion for Friday, February 15, 2013

Brooke Eikenberry Lent 2013

Friday, February 15

So we are ambassadors for Christ, since God is making his appeal through us; we entreat you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

As we work together with him, we urge you also not to accept the grace of God in vain.  For he says, “At an acceptable time I have listened to you, and on a day of salvation I have helped you.” See, now is the acceptable time; see, now is the day of salvation! We are putting no obstacle in anyone’s way, so that no fault may be found with our ministry, but as servants of God we have commended ourselves in every way: through great endurance, in afflictions, hardships, calamities, beatings, imprisonments, riots, labors, sleepless nights, hunger; by purity, knowledge, patience, kindness, holiness of spirit, genuine love, truthful speech, and the power of God; with the weapons of righteousness for the right hand and for the left; in honor and dishonor, in ill repute and good repute. We are treated as impostors, and yet are true; as unknown, and yet are well known; as dying, and see—we are alive; as punished, and yet not killed; as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing everything(2 Corinthians 5:20 – 6:10)

 

PEOPLE LISTEN!  LISTEN NOW!  Paul and his followers are strident as they carry their message to the people of Corinth. The old ways have past.  Paul implores them and us by extension to open our hearts and give our lives to God through Christ NOW.

Anger, frustration, exasperation and despair are all emotions that are stirred up as they struggle to bring forth their message.  Evangelism is a challenging and difficult task.

Paul and his followers took on the responsibility to be ambassadors for Christ, and for their efforts, they suffered hardships—beatings, imprisonment, hunger, and sleepless nights.

Change is hard and moving from one form of thought to a new way of thinking is exactly what Paul proposes.  Yet Paul and his followers continued their work. They believed God’s power was working through them.  They exhibited patience, kindness, and love to the Corinthians even though those values were not always reciprocated.  They were filled with the Holy Spirit and trusted in the truth of their message.

 -Submitted by Stephnia Pramuk

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