Ordinary people doing what they are called to can have a worldwide effect.
Just before Christmas I was challenged by something I read, it was written by Caroline Fletcher and Brian Radcliffe for Scripture Union and based on the story of Ananias being called to visit Saul. Saul had been present and approved of the stoning of one of the first Christians named Stephen. We know him now as Paul the author of many letters in the New Testament.
The questions that made me wonder were: How significant do you think you are in God's plans? Is there anything that causes you to doubt God can use you or question whether your obedience to the Lord really makes much difference to other's lives?
The story of Ananias appears in Acts 9:10-19a. Ananias received a vision, telling him to go and visit Saul someone well known for his persecution of Christian people like Ananias. We know very little about Ananias; we can assume he was an ordinary everyday person, not unlike myself. Clearly if I were called to visit a notorious and infamous persecutor of Christians (no names mentioned here...) then I would think 'surely there are others better placed to do this.'
We know now that Ananias was obedient to the call and "if he had not visited and prayed with Saul, then Saul would not have received God's healing and empowering to be the great missionary he was to become."
So on to the challenge for today.
"It's easy to think we are only important in God's plans if we are church leaders or full-time Christian workers. Yet Ananias shows us what a huge impact the obedience of one ordinary person can have." Says Caroline Fletcher.
The passage I was reading concludes with words by Brian Radcliffe, "What matters is that Ananias, like Mary before him, doesn't hold back, waiting for someone more worthy to appear. How ever little he may feel, he is willing to do God's big business.
It is God's Spirit who turns little people into God's big people."
We may be ordinary everyday folk yet when are obedient to the call then great things will happen.
What do you think God is calling you to this year? Someone to help? A new job? Something to be involved in, or something to leave behind and set off in a new direction? Where will God lead you to in 2021?