Read: Acts 13
WOW! What a chapter. Paul and Barnabas were set apart and sent out by the Holy Spirit to tell people about Jesus. God used them in incredible ways. In Cyprus they led those who were firmly against God to Him. They went to Pisidia where it seemed as if almost the whole city was salivating at the chance to hear about Jesus. They heard, rejoiced, and glorified God!
They were SET APART and they were SENT OUT!
It is easy to read chapters like this and feel like our Christian life is sub-par. It is easy to wonder why we feel like we don’t experience things like this or why we don’t seem to have this kind of calling. But whenever we start to feel like this it is because we have FORGOTTEN. What have we forgotten?
WE HAVE FORGOTTEN THAT WE TOO ARE SET APART AND SENT OUT!
When you surrendered your life to Jesus and received Him as your Savior, He set you apart. He made you holy. He gave you a mission. He put you on His A team. He chose you as an instrument for Himself. Think about that! He chose you!
So often we spend too much time asking the question, “Where is God sending me?” and not enough time asking the question, “Where has God sent me?”
The truth is God has sent us all over the city of Lexington (and around the world if you don’t live here) and has placed us in places for His glory - our job, school, dorm, friend group, family, etc. Our identities are MISSIONARIES.
We are missionaries who get a salary.
We are missionaries who are also degree-getters.
We are missionaries who are also friends.
We are missionaries who are also roommates.
You could keep going. The point is… just like Paul and Barnabas, we are SET APART and we are SENT OUT. God is doing the same things today as He did in Acts through His people and through His church… and we get to join the movement.
So what do we do?
1) We EMBRACE our calling (v.1-4)
2) We live BOLD lives for Jesus (v.5-12)
3) We take EVERY ON-RAMP to share the Gospel (v.13-41)
4). We HELP OTHERS know Jesus and live for Him (v.42-52)
As we go to work, as we go to school, as we go to the gym, as we go to our kids practices… we go with this purpose.
Why is it so easy to forget that we are SENT? How does it encourage you that you are?
By: Nick Parsons
“Brothers, if you have any word of encouragement for the people, come and give it.” (v.15c)
This part of verse 15 spoke to me. Who is in my circle of influence that needs a “word of encouragement” today? When I was a small child I remember hearing the poem “Rub a Dub Dub, Three Men in a Tub”. If you learned that as I did you’ll recall the three men were The Butcher, The Baker, & The Candlestick-Maker. So you’re thinking what in the world does that have to do with Acts 13? 😂. Not everyone is called to full time vocational ministry but all Christians are SET APART & SENT OUT to share the life changing story of Jesus. It doesn’t matter what your occupation is, you are a missionary! So whether you’re a butcher, baker, or candlestick-maker, God has placed you in a unique mission field for the purpose of sharing the Gospel. The fields are ripe for harvest, but the workers are few. (Luke 10:2). Let’s get busy bringing in the harvest! Thanks for the encouraging word today Nick!
Great word and reminders Nick! Being on mission IS our life’s purpose. I’ve been through valleys and mountain tops in remembering this continuously and experience true joy when obeying this command. Grateful for your reminders and encouragement today!
Well said Nick. I too love this chapter in Acts. With boldness, with scripture and by the power of the Holy Spirit, we too go out reaching the lost and discipling those that God has given. I believe this chapter in Acts was given as motivation to do such. What a Savior we have!
Stirring words, Nick, thank you for the reminder. It called to mind a time forty years ago when I took a new job in Tennessee and so had to leave my church family at Broadway Baptist Church. They organized a “pounding “ for me, an Eastern Kentucky tradition where the church members each brought a pound of something, like flour, sugar, butter or bread. They hosted what essentially was a going away gathering for me after an evening service, presented me with the dry goods, and prayed over me. In doing so I felt very much “set apart” and “sent out”. With this send off I quickly found a new church home in Tennessee and was blessed by God with many opportunities to teach the youth group, sing and witness at a local penitentiary, teach Training Union class for 4th, 5th and 6th graders, etc. All this to say that there is great value in realizing that we are set apart and sent out, just as there is in knowing that we are saved to serve, as my old pastor often reminded us. So again, thank you for the reminder today, Nick!
It's so easy to forget this mission because our sin causes us to forget what is of most importance. We see the things that are immediately in front of us in the day to day and slowly begin to forget the eternal mission of Christ. It is only by consistent effort and prayer to keep an eternal mindset that this mission is of most importance. It is such a beautiful thing to be used by God in this way and truly is the only thing that gives life purpose. A life lived for Jesus is the only that has or will ever matter. Brothers and sisters, let us press on with this truth in mind!
Great encouragement, Nick! No matter what your paycheck says, if you are a believer, you are a full time missionary. It is so easy to forget this at times and just go on with our daily lives and let those in vocational ministry do all the work for the kingdom. Praying that I can see myself as a missionary (because I am!) and make an impact where God has me
Thanks Nick for your inciteful words and for reminding us that we are called to go out .I am reminded of my call to go out to NYC and arriving there 4 days after 9/11 and not knowing what I was going to do there but knowing I was called . I was called to go to Times Square Church and ended up ministering to a street person named Angel . I had so much Peace in my heart because I knew I was doing what called me to do . That was a while back but in the last few years of my old age I was called to go to 4 assisted living places in Lexington and share my music . The Kovid shut down my ministry but I am praying that as things are opening but I can resume that ministry . Pray for me as I pray for you .
Such a great encouragement to remember that we’ve already been commissioned to “be a missionary every day”!
Great reminder to remember there is purpose in all we do