1 & 2 Timothy and Titus: Day 2

Paul’s Testimony

by

Today's Text: 1 Timothy 1:12-20, Acts 8:1-3, Acts 9:1-22

Scripture Reading: 1 Timothy 1:12-20, Acts 8:1-3, Acts 9:1-22

I never wanted to join the circus. And yet, here I am, breathlessly perched on the tightrope of terrified obedience. It’s that narrow road we’re called to walk as followers of Christ. The stakes get higher when our faith in Christ compels us to go and to do, to serve and to minister, knowing we don’t have what it takes to do so on our own.

As we read Paul’s words in 1 Timothy, we can squint our eyes and see him walking on the tightrope ahead of us. As he describes his qualifications for ministry, it’s clear Paul knows how unqualified he truly is.

It was Paul, after all, who approved the persecution of Stephen. That event was the spark that ignited a raging fire of persecution among God’s people. While the Church wept and wailed, “Saul… was ravaging the church. He would enter house after house, drag off men and women, and put them in prison” (Acts 8:3).

Put that on your Bible college application.  

Based on Saul’s resume, there’s not a single one of us who would pick him to teach the gospel, encourage the saints, plant churches, spearhead missionary journeys, and appoint church leaders. And yet, God Himself described Saul (a.k.a. Paul) as His “chosen instrument” (Acts 9:15).

This is the seemingly upside down way of our sovereign God. He never calls us into kingdom work because we are the most fit, the most prepared, the most gifted, or the most popular. He doesn’t ask us to do things that we could easily do in our own strength and power.

Instead, He invites us out onto that tightrope where we know we aren’t qualified, where we must trust His Spirit for every step. A life of ministry and obedience can feel scary because we know we cannot grit our teeth and do what is required on our own. We aren’t capable of reaching a lost and dying world or serving selflessly in our own strength. We can’t generate enough elbow grease to produce faithfulness on our own. Our resumés are just good kindling in God’s economy.

That reality can paralyze us. And yet, when human eyes only saw Saul’s failures, God looked at him and saw future faithfulness:

“I give thanks to Christ Jesus our Lord who has strengthened me, because he considered me faithful, appointing me to the ministry” (1 Timothy 1:12).

While we tend to evaluate our qualifications based on what we see in the rearview mirror, only God is able to see our forward faithfulness. In His sovereignty, He knew that Saul was too weak and sinful to surrender and serve, but He also saw the coming tsunami of grace that would sweep Saul away from his rebellion.

The next time you look at the ways God calls you to live, love, and serve, thinking “I can’t do this,” know that you’re right. We can’t walk the narrow road on our own. May the gospel steady our feet as with eyes on Jesus we dare to take the next step toward future faithfulness.

SRT-TimothyTitus-Shareimage-Day2

Erin Davis is an author, blogger, and speaker who loves to see women of all ages run to the deep well of God’s Word. When she’s not writing, you can find Erin chasing chickens and children on her small farm in the Midwest.

  • Kadie Henderson

    “While we tend to evaluate our qualifications based on what we see in the rearview mirror, only God is able to see our forward faithfulness.” SO comforting! <3 God's dreams for me are bigger than the dreams I have for myself. I tend to forget that way to often, and instead of walking in God's will for my life I go in my own direction… Thank goodness is grace and love and mercy and strength is more than enough. Lord, may I walk in Your will for my life. What are YOUR dreams for my life? And may I be the wife my husband needs and the mama my baby needs with a grateful and joyful heart. I've learned over the past year that I am not qualified to be either – but with You I can do all things. May I walk forward in faithfulness, knowing full well that you are more than enough in all things.

  • Emily McGhee

    It is so good to be encouraged to move out of our comfort zone, so we can be lead by the Holy Spirit ❤️

  • This is so great. We try to lean on our own understanding when Gods ways are higher, greater, and more perfect than we could ever imagine. Praise Him.

  • Amber Underwood

    This spoke to me completely. As I re-new my walk with God, I have a new fire for Him and I want to please Him by serving. Even when I feel like I am unqualified in my eyes, He is always there to provide. Great message!

  • I’m reminded of where God rescued me out of and had put into His marvelous light!!! Is it always a sweet and easy ride? No! But counting it all JOY in all situations it says in James, or anything is possible through Christ says in Phillippians. Remembering that God will use every situations for His glory. Thank you LORD for choosing us regardless of our merits or status we came from, please continue to use us as the instrument needed to continue to push back the darkness in the world!!!

  • Barbie Hahn

    I can get over “chosen instrument.” We’re chosen, instrumental – Purposeful. Blowing me away. Those two words, “chosen instrument.”

  • Maryanne Njoroge

    This is what the Lord says to Zerubbabel: It is not by force nor by strength, but by my Spirit, says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.
    ‭‭Zechariah‬ ‭4:6‬

  • Verona Rupert

    This was s great read this morning

  • Anonymous

    Lord,

    I struggle with feeling incapable in my service to You. I do not feel like I am strong enough to live out the callings you have placed in my life. This study was such a good reminder that I am not supposed to do it on my own. You are my strength, and you are my comfort. You shed your blood so that I can be free, and I can trust in You. I love you, Lord. Thank you, thank you, thank you, for what You have done for me, and for the world. Would you use my hands, my feet, my words, my actions, to spread Your truth.

    Amen.

  • I loved your analogy of walking the tightrope! I so often feel that I do not measure up or have the right qualifications to be or do what I think God wants me to, but this is a beautiful reminder that God is the one who can and will make us into what He desires as we walk with Him and remain obedient to His call.

  • Jordy Whitaker

    This was so impactful for me. I’ve been involved in worship ministry the majority of my life and continue to be asked to participate in and out of the church I go to now. But, it has always been a struggle for me— I get SO nervous being in front of people, I know my voice isn’t a huge, powerful, steady one. And yet, God keeps pushing me to minister in this way. I really needed to read this because I always doubt my “resume” or my “qualifications” to be doing the things that God seems to guide me towards. It’s insane how much He loves us and BELIEVES IN US to do His work. There’s no other confidence like His confidence.

  • Lea Potter

    I look to Paul as inspiration that we can all be touched and changed by life’s experiences

  • Cindy McBrayer

    And don’t forget Ananias! He obeyed God and went to visit the very man whose mission it was to destroy the body of Christ!

  • Amber Collins

    Reading this I am reminded that I can’t do the things I’ve been called to do on my own, but that God does not just call the qualified but He appoints and qualifies the ones He calls to do His work.

  • Courtney

    1 Timothy 1:16 ~ Mercy

    Not only have I been given mercy, but I’ve been given the same power that rose Jesus from the grave. In me Christ Jesus shows that he has patience without limits. My biography is validation.

  • Christian

    I’m really convicted reading this in how I continually rely on my own strength to do things that I feel like the Lord has lead me to.

    I’ve read the account of Paul so many times and tonight it gave me actual chills. To think of how Ananias was afraid to go to him because of how terrifying Saul was, but the Lord CHOSE him and APPOINTED him! How insane is that? This is another reminder to me of how I just need to get over myself, not worry about what others think about me, and do what God has appointed me to do.

  • Sydney Belcher

    It’s crazy how God’s plan and provision is always 10 steps ahead and something we can never imagine. He’s truly the best.

    • A M Jackson

      A’int that the truth. About 5 years ago I had an affair. (I’m married with kids and so was he). I thought we would end up living happily ever after. God’s plan was 10 steps ahead of mine. God chose to restore my marriage. I found out recently the man I had the affair with had another and got her pregnant( she has kids as well). As I reflected I realized God’s plan and provisions WERE actually ahead of mine. It could have been me who forever altered my children’s lives as well as his child’s, because, after all that’s what I wanted. Instead God was faithful.

  • Celine Brant

    Something that stood out to me was that after Saul was called, he was still blind. He was then baptized and it points out that after he ATE, he regained his strength. When God calls on us, we must first accept that calling. But doing so doesn’t automatically make us ready to walk out. We must FEED our heart and our soul in order to be strengthened. The Bread of Life is how God equips us!

  • Erin Mitchell

    Paul is such a good example of how It doesn’t matter how unqualified you feel or how many mistakes you have made. It’s God who calls, it is He that qualifies the unqualified. And God can use anyone to further his kingdom

  • Louanne Provonsha

    Please pray with me that my new son in law will be called by our Lord and he will hear His voice and be saved.

  • Pua Johnson

    Overwhelmed with joy reading this plan, knowing how qualified I am, even when I thought I would never be worthy enough. Forever saved by His grace. Hallelujah!

  • Em Kronenwetter

    My church has an outreach for individuals who are overcoming drug addiction. These men and women have become some of the most influential people in our church; bringing others in, changing theirs lives & turning them to the Lord. They have suffered but now God is using their suffering as an instrument for Him, just as he used Saul. I know most times they feel that they are unworthy of Gods love, but we all sin and fall short… the great thing about God is that He has us hooked to a harness while we are on that tightrope, because we may fall, but He never lets us hit the ground.

  • Stacey Cothren

    Acts 9:15-16 speak most loudly to me this morning. As Ananias argues with Jesus about Sauls character and reputation, Christ tells him that Saul is his chosen instrument, but also that he will show him how

  • Anna Lubas

    I believe this gospel is proof that our Lord Jesus can take ANYONE and turn their life and their very being around. And make them a testimony of his love and faithfulness to us.

    • Ashleigh Basham

      Yes! I see this so much when I look at my own life, and the life of some of my closest friends. Gods grace, love and mercy just amaze me every day.

  • This gives me hope for my friends who are so far from God. He isn’t done with them yet!

  • Meg MacTav

    I’m constantly shaken by how many times I mess up and keep turning away from God. But I am more shaken by God’s relentless patience towards me in my failures. Even through the worst of it all He finds a way to still use us as examples of his love, in this case through His unlimited patience with us

  • Nikole Stevenson

    Question. The passage says that in the vision Ananias was told to go to Saul and that Saul had a vision that he would be coming to give him his sight back. But, the passage does not say God told Ananias what happened to Saul on the road. But then Ananias mentions that to Saul. Do we assume that God told Ananias this information and the author just left that part out?

    • Cathy Simpkins

      That’s a really good question, Nikole! You are being very observant. As many times as I have read this passage, I had never thought of that. Another possibility is that someone else told him, or maybe even that he and Saul discussed it when he got to the house. God apparently didn’t think it was important to include in scripture , so he didn’t. It’s still amazing to think about all the details that are recorded for us in scripture!

  • Paula Alfonso

    I struggle with grace – a lot. I feel that it is something I can impart on others , but myself… well that just overwhelms me.
    “Only God is able to see our forward faithfulness”. Thank-you for those words.. I need to trust that my faith will help me on my tight rope.

  • Melissa Dean

    I have a narrow tightrope in front of me right now. It’s hard to see and even harder to walk. And yet, I must trust that it is there.

  • Allison Joy

    What struck me in today’s reading was Ananias’ response. Not only did he trust God when he was told that God was going to use Saul, but when he goes to Saul, he immediately calls him “brother.” He doesn’t make Saul pass a test. He doesn’t tell Saul he’d better “shape up.” Without reservation, without proof, and before his name change, he calls Saul “brother.”

    • Rebekah Schwandt

      Thank you for this insight! This is really helpful and convicting for me as I am in a position right now of having to approach a person about some conflict going on. What an important reminder to approach them with Godly love and with an expectation that God can bring out the good in them and can still use them to advance His kingdom regardless of what they’ve done in their past (rather than expecting the worst from them.) I needed this perspective!

  • Justine Humnick

    The verse that stood out to me the most was 1 Timothy 1:16 about God demonstrating his extraordinary patience . I am so thankful that he is patient with me and that he waits for us and is there to catch us even if we fall off the tightrope.

  • Natasha Reyes

    The tightrope analogy is amazing! As I get on it with fear and doubt in my abilities, I look at all the imperfect people walking ahead of me, Paul included. God’s grace keeps them steady and moving forward, and it will do the same for me!

  • Here is another example of the Lord choosing someone completely unqualified to carry on His ministry by the world’s standards. Through Christ’s grace and mercy the Lord empowered Paul to fight for His ministry. He loves us and strengthens us and has mercy on us. He gives us what we need to empower each of us. He continues to chose us- the broken, the incomplete, the imperfect- to carry on His ministry. May I be open and receptive to hear His message and have the courage and strength to share this message with others, Amen! I can do all things through him who strengthens me Philippians 4:13

  • Heather Lynch

    So thankful for the words of 1 Timothy 1:14, that His grace overflows for me regardless.

  • Victoria Carter

    I love that! I’m feeling particularly broken right now. I read this yesterday though and it really has been on my heart today: “If you think you’ve blown God’s plan for your life, rest in this: You, my friend, are not that powerful.” ❤️

  • Victoria Carter

    I’m not sure that this is really the point of the passage, but I needed the reminder God gave regardless. I’ve recently experienced some real hurt and I’ve found myself wondering how to forgive, but also how to heal. I’m realizing I’m not enough on my own. I can’t do it on my own. I need so much help, but God’s grace is greater. I could definitely use prayer, though for God to work in me and bring healing and peace to the situation.

    • Natasha Reyes

      I’m praying for you Victoria. May God heal your heart and give you peace!

    • She Reads Truth

      Hi Victoria, thank you for sharing. We’re praying for you during this time and are so grateful that you’re here. -Margot, The SRT Team

  • Cathy Beard

    Make an appointment with your Parish Priest and talk to him about how you are feeling. Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you. Spend some quiet time seeking, what are you searching for? Ask yourself one simple question, “Can I walk away from the Holy Eucharist?” I continued to go to Mass at a Catholic church where I felt like I didn’t fit in. I spent some time going to different Catholic Churches until I found one that truly feeds my soul. Don’t give up. I will pray for you and your decision.

    • Cathy R Beard

      This reply is for Hayley. I hope this is helpful to you dear sister in Christ.

      • Hayley

        Thank you so much Cathy. I struggle with my growth in my faith. I find myself “going through the motions” so often during week after week. I feel like my spirit is so hungry for more, to learn more about Jesus and the gospel and so often the sermons are dry and for set my soul on fire for Christ . I want community and fellowship and it’s just so hard to find within the Catholic Church circle. I continue to pray and wait on God and I try my best to push myself to get inspired during the masses.

  • Kerry Terry

    The road is narrow. The ‘tight rope’ so small. Sometimes I can’t even see it, and when God shows the way to me, sometimes I don’t even want to walk it, I say no. Thank you Jesus for your patience and love, for pursuing us and steadfastness, for showing us the way. Thank God for your daily mercies and blessings. I am not worthy on my own, but know that through Jesus, I am. Thank you for this teaching!

  • It reminds me of the saying, “God doesn’t call the qualified; He qualifies the called.”

  • “Lead a tranquil and quiet life in all Godliness and dignity”. This is so desirable!

  • Jenell LSparks-Rhodes

    That’s beautiful!!

  • My dad has submitted an application for a job four hours away from where I live. I am about to finish my freshman year of high school, where everything is new and exciting, I have friends and too many activities, but now there is potential for all that to be gone. I have struggled finding loyal friends in the past, and I feel like now I have them. If we end up moving, it’ll feel like they’re gone, too. I’ll have to start over completely.
    One Sunday I was sitting in church looking up at the stage, and it suddenly occurred to me that I might lose this place, too. I have just recently joined worship team and felt like that community has helped me grow sooo much, and don’t even get me started on my youth group. Losing all of that felt awful, so I went to the bathroom and cried, right as the worship team started playing “Give Me Faith,” which, of course, made me bawl even more.
    I cried out to God in that bathroom stall saying, “I can’t do it, God. I’m not strong enough. I know you are strong enough, and I want to believe that you are strong enough, but I just don’t think I can do it. God, I want you to give me faith, but will I be able to keep it?”
    I loved this analogy about the tightrope, because that day was one where I looked down from that tightrope, and I began to lose my balance. Satan was beckoning to me from the ground, and I looked down, remembering that I can’t walk that tightrope, but forgetting that with God before me and behind me, I can.
    I’ve come to accept a little more that I might not be here in a few months. I will most definitely be sad, upset because I’ve been here for seven years and I feel like I’m losing it all. But the thing is that I won’t be losing it all; I’m just getting started. I’m not losing it all because I still have the source of my balance, the One I can’t take my eyes from without falling, Jesus. I don’t know how that tightrope’s going to wobble, but I know Jesus is there to keep me from falling.
    Thank You, Jesus, for Your strength and never-ending faithfulness, and I just want to say, thank you, She Reads Truth, for this great reminder on what I need to keep my eyes fixed on.

    • Caroline

      Oh Megan, how hard to think of losing the friends and church family you have now. How I wish I had the deep roots of faith you do, when I was your age. Read Ephesians 3:17 & 18, Paul prays for spiritual growth “your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong.”

    • Stephanie

      Very well spoken Megan! I wish I had your faith at your age! I will keep you in my prayers through this uncertain time and the possible upcoming transition. Your community here at SRT will be with you still even if you do move :) come back and keep us updated on your story

    • She Reads Truth

      Thanks so much for sharing this Megan. We’re praying for you during this time for peace and comfort. So grateful that you’re a part of our community! -Margot, The SRT Team

    • Tanis Stewart

      Wow! I love that you are coming to SRTfor knowledge and wisdom. You are seeking the Lord, what joy you have given me today and how proud your Heavenly Father is of you! Blessings to you and may Jesus always be Your True Foundation. I love your heart. Hold tightly to the faith you have been given and with each trial it will increase!❤️❤️❤️

  • Pattie Q

    I’m taking steps, baby steps, but steps none the less into the area of ministry that He has called me to. It’s the grunt work of the Kingdom. I don’t feel qualified or properly prepared, but I feel the tug on my heart to go. Pray for me as I roll up my sleeves and dive in!

    • She Reads Truth

      Thanks for sharing Pattie! We’re praying for you as you walk through this season and trust in what God has in store for you. -Margot, The SRT Team

  • Anna Vaggalis

    “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, and I am the worst of them.” 1 Timothy 1:15

    Wow, this verse explains exactly what Jesus’s purpose was for us. He came to this world to be persecuted and tortured in order to save us (sinners). Paul explains how the Lord came into the world to save sinners and he (Paul) believed he was the worst of all because of his previous sinful acts. This passage really stood out to me during today’s reading. I was able to focus on God’s love for me and that although we sin and fall short of the glory of God each day–Jesus came to the world to save us (sinners). We must focus our hearts on mirroring Jesus and showing love to others daily.

    Once completing today’s study my heart focused on/pulled out of the verses the following:

    But through God’s mercy, we are saved. So that we may demonstrate his love and patience as an example to those who will believe in him for eternal life (our lost brothers and sisters). We are saved by God’s mercy, so that we may be beacons of light for those who are lost and living in darkness.

    I ask that each and every one of you who are participating in the SRT Guard the Heritage Study to pray for me and my walk with God. I have most definitely back-slid in my relationship with God over the past few years. I ask that you all pray for me to leave the ways of the world and be more of a beacon for Christ.

    With Love,

    Anna Vaggalis

  • Ana Silva

    We don’t have what it takes to execute God’s will with out Jesus and we are not what we see in the mirror. I struggle so much with only seeing my mistakes and having a hard time getting past them. Who am I to question what God can do with my mistakes when he used Paul for so much? I don’t usually encourage the comparison game but if God can change Saul into Paul then I think we better STOP brooding about our mistakes and START searching for how God is trying to use you!

  • Meredith Sweet

    A perfect reminder of what it means to live as ministry, with perfect timing for me. As someone who works in ministry, especially someone young, I often feel overwhelmed by what I feel is expected of me. But God did not call me here to agonize over my imperfections; he calls me to use my weaknesses to point others back to him. ✨✨✨

    • Ana Silva

      I’m not in ministry – but I also keep in my head that I don’t have anything to minister because of all my mistakes. That I’m no different than anyone else. So many lies in so few words about myself and about God. mistake to mercy is His specialty!

  • Caralee Lilly

    This was such a blessing to read as I pray for my children who have abandoned their faith. God can still use them and in His way and perfect timing He will call them back.

  • Adedoyin Adebiyi

    I find myself getting distracted by a verse where Paul said he gave some people over to Satan. Can anyone clarify what that means?

    • Lauren Bernhardt

      Hi Adedoyin! Which verse are you talking about?

      • Angie

        By rejecting this, some have made shipwreck of their faith, 20 among whom are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have handed over to Satan that they may learn not to blaspheme. (verses 19 and 20 in 1 Tim) I wondered about that also…….

    • Susie

      https://www.gotquestions.org/Hymenaeus-and-Alexander.html
      Hi Adedoyin! Great question. That verse was unclear to me as well. The link above might help clarify what Paul meant. By the way, your name is beautiful. What does your name mean?

    • Beatrice Garrido

      This is what my study bible says:
      Handed over to satan refers to be put out of the church since those outside of the church are in Satan’s realm. The purpose of the discipline was not to punish the man for punishment’s sake but to effect his restoration to the church and eventual salvation. Church discipline is motivated by love, with the hope that the one disciplined will turn back to the Lord.

      –ESV Crossway Study Bible. Notes from 1Timothy 1:20 and 1 Corinthians 5:5

    • Gwen Beattie

      1 Corinthians 5:1-5 mentions this (in the plan book, it’s included for deeper study as a reference to passages where Paul addresses similar topics).

    • Annissa Hackney

      My study Bible says it is similar to 1 Cor 5:5. It says that Paul delivered them over so that they would learn not to blaspheme not because they were unbelievers. It also says that the word learn is referring to God’s discipline. It means that these men should be excluded from the church so they might abandon their evil ways. I understand all of that to mean that Paul had tried to teach these men and they continued to sin and blaspheme God even though they knew better so they turned them out of the church until they changed their ways and returned to God. I hope that helped.

    • Adedoyin Adebiyi

      Thank you so much! I appreciate it.

  • Paul says that he received mercy because he “acted out of ignorance in unbelief” but didn’t he receive grace because God is merciful?

    • Melody Rose

      I think verse 16 can help to clarify, “I received mercy for this reason, that in me, as the foremost [of sinners], Jesus Christ might display his perfect patience as an example…”

      • Wendy

        Don’t get me wrong – I love that we actually get to see Paul (and all biblical authors) wrestle to express themselves and their faith. I think you nailed it – thanks for your thoughts! Such great stuff! ❤️

  • Morgan Mattson

    So need to remember this in my life right now!

  • Sarah Schwanke

    I needed to read this today. This is something I have been struggling with a lot lately. ♥️

  • Lindsey Bailey

    I have to remind myself daily of this truth. My default is to try and do everything on my own. I start looking at me, my actions or inactions, my abilities or inabilities. The problem is where I am looking. If I look at me or if I look at God. I like to look at my relationship with God like a dance. He leads and with my eyes locked into Him, I can follow. As soon as my eyes leave Him and look at me, the choreography is gone and I don’t know what to do next.

  • Libby Kosciuszko

    Yes! Thank you for sharing your thoughts, Laura. Helps to know I’m not alone in these insecurities.

  • Megan Brown

    God does not call the qualified, he qualifies the called.
    This is something a mentor told me all the time and is a wonderful role model of what it’s like to be a godly person. Love this devotion.

  • Amen! God can and will use anybody regardless of their “resume” or qualifications to accomplish his will. I think most everyone considers themselves “the worst of them,” as Paul deems himself. I know I do. Verse 16 is my favorite verse from 1 Timothy 1; in me, “the worst of them, Christ Jesus might demonstrate his extraordinary patience as an example to those who would believe in him for eternal life.”

  • Amber TennilleEwing

    I am 40+6 weeks pregnant with our second child today. A reoccurring thought I have had is, “Am I enough for this? Do I have enough of myself to give to both of my children? Can I give birth naturally/make sure my oldest still feels wanted and loved/take care of a newborn and 5-year-old?” After reading this, I feel God saying, “No, you can’t do this – but I can.” How relieving it is to serve a God who can do anything!

    • Amber – being a mom is something you do. First and foremost, you are defined as a daughter of the King! Let that define you and shape your thoughts and actions. You have free and complete access to abundant resources! Your Father will help you. <3

    • Andrea Durfee

      ❤️ it’s amazing how your heart grows. Early congratulations!

    • Melanie

      praying for you Amber…your heart is right there in the crux of immense love for these two sweet children. what a beautiful mom you are. may your delivery be healthy, may God increase your capacity, and may the Lord enable your oldest to feel your love for him ever more. may peace wash over you…

    • Natasha Reyes

      Congratulations mamas! I pray that God gives you the wisdom and strength (and patience!) to raise happy, healthy kids that walk in God’s path.

    • Eva Holsinger

      Rest in Gods peace about not only whether your preferred birth plan works out or if you have the strength for the next 18+ years! As a mom of 5 (2 of them very unplanned!) I do experience his strength every day when I choose to lean on him

  • Paul’s conversion gives me comfort, for some wayward family members, that no-one is beyond God’s reach and that it’s never too late to come to Him and serve in His Name.

  • Kelly Brewer

    The temperature of my “forward faithfulness” feels tepid at best. Thank you for the reminder that I cannot even get to that on my own. Praise the Lord for His faithfulness!

  • Natasha Pavez

    “Christ Jesus came to save sinners of which I am the foremost” – I’ve been struggling with a particular sin, and today the temptation overtook me. This verse sung out to me today. I am a sinner and I need Christ more than ever. As I rely on Him more, I sin less in this area – He does change us. Seeing how radically He changed Paul gives me so much hope. From persecutor, to evangelist: only through God!

  • I have been struggling with this inner conflict about finding a permenant church home. I grew up Catholic and although I do admire their principles, I feel spiritually unfulfilled . A part of my is still holding onto those traditional values but after months of continued worship at my Catholic Church my heart is pulling me to seek out different churches and I just don’t know where to go.
    How do I know if this is God calling me to branch out or if the devil is trying to lead me astray? I pray that God can open my eyes and ears today to hear his voice throughout all of this uncertainty. This has been the hardest season.

    • CJ

      Hi Hayley – I too grew up Catholic and I don’t go to a Catholic church. What is important is that you find a Bible-based church who loves Jesus. Denomination does NOT matter! Try a few and see what you like!

    • Rachel

      Haley – I’ve been there. Please know that the devil would not lead you to a church that preaches the Bible or Jesus’ name, only the exact opposite! He would rather isolate and keep you from making any step toward finding a church home. Know that there are many theological differences between any other Christian Church and the Catholic Church, maybe have a list of things you are looking for, do some research online about churches before you visit so you can read about what they believe. If you have friends in other churches talk with them about those churches and visit with them. Also God leads in peace not worry or chaos. If you are feeling led that’s the Hoky Spirit most likely. God gives us good desires, just as a Good Father would do! Follow peace and pursue it and you’ll be in good hands!

    • Elle

      It’s OK to visit different churches. If you are used to Catholic tradition you may find some of the Protestant churches like Episcopal, Lutheran, and Presbyterian to be different without being uncomfortably different.

      • Phy

        yes good advice elle.

      • Chris

        I’m born and raised Lutheran. Be careful in choosing. Many differences in our denomination. Find one that believes the whole bible! Ask lots of questions.

  • Whitney KnightPritchard

    This was so timely as I try to do things in my own strength and am feeling burnt out and unqualified. “In my weakness, He is strong” So thankful I can trust Him to do in me what He needs for His praise and Kingdom! Here goes Forward Faithfulness!!!

  • So beautifully written! My family and I are walking out this “tightrope of terrified obedience” as we continue to wait in an already long season of waiting, feeling like we are taking one step in front of the other on a very long cable with our eyes closed. BUT the peace is in knowing that we can do this with God, on our own we never leave the platform. God is ensuring our steps and slow as they may be, they will still get us there. Prayerful that very soon God opens our eyes and provides vision for us as we await His clear guidance.

  • Jane Andrews

    I love the phrase “forward faithfulness.” People see our human failures but God sees our forward, future faithfulness. Thanks be to God!

    • Libby Kosciuszko

      Yes! This stuck out to me as well. Our past can keep us paralyzed in the present and future. I need to keep my eyes fixed on Him who is BEFORE me. Such a beautiful reminder that God selects the broken.

  • Sarah Marshall

    I think each one of us has a calling, some to serve in far away places, others to serve right where we are. I heard someone say once that your mission field is often the space between your own two feet. That could be your workplace, your school, your home. I don’t feel like I am confident enough or smart enough to lead where I am but God reminds me that I can with His power behind me.

  • Kristine Loughman

    How grateful I am that God doesn’t look back at the road we’ve walked, but instead looks ahead at where we are headed.

  • Churchmouse

    May I walk forward in faithfulness, singularly focused : that I, like Timothy, would “fight the good fight, having faith and a good conscience.” I know I cannot rely on my own strength , will or intellect but I know I can do all things through Christ. It’s all about and through Him. Amen.

  • Sometimes I focus more on my lack of qualifications than the fact that if he called me, he will equip me. I pray that I will focus more on the fact that He will equip me and just walk in His will.

  • Gretchen Stencil

    I just returned two days ago from a week Mexico trip with our high school group. This was the same main message 3 of our speakers spoke about because none of us knew what the other was speaking about. God was truly trying to get one message across and here it is again. In light of Billy Graham just changing addresses it seems like God has one message for those of us that remain.

  • Chris Gruhlke

    Beautifully written, Laura!

  • Kelly Chataine

    Jesus paid the price in full and now, we are called and equipped to spread the Gospel. Praise God!
    Husband update: last week he came down with a virus and it set his progress back a bit. Please pray for the removal of his dizziness, nausea, and vomiting. As well as, the return of his physical strength, willingness to work at getting better, and initiation.
    For me, I am still lonely but God continues to bind up my wounds and help me.
    May all glory go to our Creator and Sustainer.

    • Pam

      Praying for you and your husband Kelly.

    • GramsieSue

      Praying for your strength as you stand by his side. Praying for God’s healing of this virus, and all the other things that make him feel weak. Hugs to you, Kathy ❤️

    • She Reads Truth

      Hi Kelly, we’re continuing to pray for you and your husband during this time. Thank you for the update and we’re so grateful for you. -Margot, The SRT Team

  • Thank you for this reminder that we don’t have to be qualified, we just need to trust. God is asking me to do things wherefore I am definitely not qualified and it scares me, still I have said ‘yes’. But it is hard, so please pray for me that the Holy Spirit would help me and guide me.

    • Emily R.

      I will be praying for you Farah. I am in a similar place right now, God has placed a calling and desire in my heart and I have also said yes, but I feel so unqualified and unprepared. Today’s lesson was a timely reminder for me.

      • Farah

        Thank you so much! I will be praying for you too! The most important thing is that you said yes, I believe God and His Spirit will lead us both now.

Further Reading...