1 Corinthians 1:26-31 NIV
“Brothers and sisters, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth. But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him. It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. Therefore, as it is written: ‘Let the one who boasts boast in the Lord.’”
Think of What You Were
This definitely puts matters in the proper perspective for us. For, if we ever get the idea that we are able to do the things we do, which are of God, because of our greatness, or our talents, or our giftedness, or our smarts, etc., then we need to think again.
As Christians, all that we are and have comes from God. We can’t even believe in Jesus on our own. We can only come to faith in Jesus Christ if God the Father draws us to him, i.e., if he persuades us to believe in Jesus. And even our faith is a gift from God, not of ourselves (Eph 2:8-9; Jn 6:44).
The Lord doesn’t call us to himself because of our greatness. In fact, Scripture teaches that he called (chose) us even before he created the world. So, it has nothing to do with us, but everything to do with God (Rom 8:29; 2 Tim 1:8-9; Eph 1:3-4; cf. Ps 139; Jer 1:5).
I can attest to the fact that when we are empowered of the Holy Spirit, we are able to do many things we were not able to do in the natural. That way we know it is of God and not us, because he often calls us to do things that we were never able to do before.
I like the part here about “not many were influential.” Amen! I still remember the words my pastor spoke to me when I was 32 years old. He told me that I spoke with too much authority for someone so young, and that I should wait until I had gray hairs on my head and then people would listen to me. In a way, it was kind of prophetic what he said.
I was 54 years old when the Lord called me to this ministry. For, I first had to go through a lot of hard stuff, and I had to be humbled a lot, and the Lord had to do a lot in my heart and life to prepare me for such a time as this, so that I would be totally dependent on him, and not on myself at all.
But God Chose
God doesn’t choose like humans do. I went through a ton of rejection in my life before the Lord opened this door of ministry for me, and I still get a lot of rejection. But I had person after person “slam dunking” me all throughout my life, like I was a basketball, whenever I moved forward in following the Lord where I knew he wanted me to go.
But the Lord allowed all of that in my life, for what he called me to do requires that I never buckle to rejection, but that I remain faithful to the Lord. It doesn’t mean I am not open to correction or criticism, though, if I need it, and if it comes from the mind of Christ and not from the flesh of man. But I can’t be swayed by human opinion of me.
I know what God has called me to do, and I must stay the course no matter what others think about me or say to me or do to me. But I was not there before age 54 (nearly 55). I got discouraged many times, and even gave up at one point, but the Lord brought me back – all glory to HIM!
And he performs miracle after miracle within me, stretching me way beyond anything I would have ever imagined that I would ever be doing or would even be capable of doing. For example, my poetry was always plain and simple, no guess work involved, more like a conversation that rhymed.
But some of the poetry the Lord gives me is not anything like I had ever written before, and on topics I had never written on before, either. My own poetry was usually more like my personal journals. And I had never written songs before 2011, and the Lord gave me a wide variety of those, too.
And I was horrible in literature and writing in school in my younger years, and I paid little attention to what was going on in the world, and I was horrible with geography or history or government or anything like that, and yet the Lord taught me so much there, too.
Thus, I can’t boast at all in anything that he does in me and through me because I absolutely know that it is him doing it and not me, and so I always (hopefully always) give him all the glory for anything he accomplishes through me for his honor and praise. Without him, I am nothing.
Because of Him
It is only because of God/Jesus that any of us who are in Christ, by faith in Jesus Christ, are in Christ Jesus. Again, we can’t even come to Christ unless the Father first draws us to Christ. And even the faith to believe in Jesus comes from God, as well as the ability to repent and to obey our Lord.
But just because it is only because of God’s grace that we are in Christ Jesus, and that we are redeemed (bought back for God), it does not mean that we do nothing. For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works that we should walk in them. But they are the works of God.
And it is God who empowers us and who equips and gifts us and who puts within us what is needed for us to obey him in doing what he has called us to do, so there is no room for boasting. We did nothing to earn or to deserve God’s grace or our salvation or his callings upon our lives.
But since it all comes from God, it is all going to be in accord with God’s will and purpose for our lives, and it is going to be in accord with the teachings of Scripture, too. So, we will humble ourselves before God, turn from our sins, and follow Jesus with our lives – all because of God’s grace to us.
An Original Work / April 15, 2012
Walking daily with my Savior
brings me joy.
Loving Father; precious Jesus;
He’s my Savior and my Lord.
Gently leads me; follow Him.
I’ve invited Him within.
Now abiding in His presence,
oh, what peace.
From my self-life
He has brought me,
By His mercy, full release.
Hope and comfort,
peace and safety Jesus brings
When I daily bow before Him;
Obey freely; do His will.
Follow Him where’er He leads.
Listen to Him; His words heed.
Now obeying his words fully,
oh, what love
That He gives me
By His Spirit, from above.
Loving Father; precious Jesus,
He’s my friend.
With my Savior, by His Spirit,
I will endure to the end.
Share the gospel, tell what’s true.
Witness daily; His will do.
Tell the world of how their Savior
bled and died.
On a cruel cross He suffered
So that we might be alive.