There’s a lot of talk today about prepping. We have folks serious about health doing some hardcore meal prepping. Check out the 21 Day Fix as a program that teaches this.
We have others convinced the world is about to end, or at least head into total anarchy. They have large underground bunkers with food supplies to last for months. These doomsday preppers have their own TV shows, and you can find over 100 prepper channels on YouTube.
We all prep for some things. If you lay out your workout clothes the night before bed you are more likely to exercise the next day. If you plan your day ahead of time you will be more efficient. If you fill up your car ahead of time you are less likely to run out of gas. If you prep for an exam (I’m looking at you, students), you are more likely to do well.
What if I told you God has already prepped you for His service? The Bible gives us many examples of this, none better than Paul. Here are three ways God prepped Paul for service. He’s done the same for you.
God prepped Saul before he ever became known as Paul. Schooled in Judaism, Paul studied under the great rabbi, Gamaliel. Reared in Tarsus, he was born a Roman citizen (see Acts 16 to see where this came in handy). Bright, zealous, and knowledgeable in Greek thought, this man was destined to make an impact.
Can you see ways God began preparing you to serve Him even before you were saved? I’ve had a love for animals all my life. This helps me share the whole Story of the gospel, from Creation to Restoration. I’ve had many wonderful gospel conversations with people starting with the beautiful world we enjoy. Your personality, talents, and so many other factors beyond your control were given to you by God before you even knew Him.
Paul’s radical conversion has been misunderstood. Some think only a “Damascus road” type of conversion is significant, but most of us weren’t persecuting believers before we met Jesus! Your testimony is powerful, because the God of all gods has changed you! Paul never forgot what it meant to be lost, calling himself the “chief of sinners.” It’s vital we understand salvation as wonderful and amazing, and share Christ out of the personal relationship we have with Him.
WITH A COMMISSION
“But the Lord said to him, ‘Go! For this man is My chosen instrument to carry My name before Gentiles, kings, and the sons of Israel. I will certainly show him how much he must suffer for My name!'” (Acts 9:15). Most of us know the first half of his commission but not the rest. Suffering doesn’t fit our Americanized Christianity very much. Paul received his own version of the Great Commission, and with that he set the pace for the spread of the gospel across the Mediterranean world. Paul wanted to reach the whole world with the whole gospel. While Paul was the apostle to the Gentiles, he consistently preached to the Jews as well. God prepared Paul from the start of his new life in Christ for the ministry that awaited him.
God has given you and I a Great Commission as well, not a great suggestion! He began preparing you to serve Him before you knew Him. He changed your life supernaturally through conversion to serve Him confidently. He commissioned you to tell others about Him so they could also experience this reality for the glory of God.
Take hope today. You can learn more how to share your faith, and I’ve written this book to help. But God has already prepared you to follow Him, so follow well today!