1 Corinthians 15:1-11
Now I would remind you, brothers and sisters, of the good news that I proclaimed to you, which you in turn received, in which also you stand, through which also you are being saved, if you hold firmly to the message that I proclaimed to you—unless you have come to believe in vain. For I handed on to you as of first importance what I in turn had received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures, and that he was buried, and that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers and sisters at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have died. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me. For I am the least of the apostles, unfit to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me has not been in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them—though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me. Whether then it was I or they, so we proclaim and so you have come to believe.
Food For Thought:
The line that stands out to me in this passage of Scripture is when the apostle Paul says: “For I am the least of the apostles, unfit to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me has not been in vain.” In this passage, the apostle Paul claims that if not for grace he wouldn’t be able to serve. Grace is an interesting word in the Christian faith. Grace is getting much more than we deserve. Grace is not justice; it is God’s unmerited favor and love poured out to us. Think about ways in which you have experienced God’s grace in your life. How did that feel? When have you extended grace to another person? What did that feel like to do that?
Servant God, there is an awful lot to do, you know. A person could get overwhelmed and intimidated by the sheer magnitude of all the good causes and all the hurting, needy people. Still, there must be something I can do, something that my experiences and talents will lend themselves to. Make my heart open to others. Give me sight to see the needs and strength of joy to persevere in the work of loving and serving. Remind me that I don’t have to do it all. I just have to do my share. Amen.
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