Used for Godís Purpose
ďWhen Saul arrived in Jerusalem, he tried to meet with the believers, but they were all afraid of him. They did not believe he had truly become a believer! Then Barnabas brought him to the apostles and told them how Saul had seen the Lord on the way to Damascus and how the Lord had spoken to Saul. He also told them that Saul had preached boldly in the name of Jesus in Damascus.Ē1
If a well-known persecutor of Christians came to your church, it is likely everyone would run without thinking twice! You would want to be no where near such a dangerous person, nor would it be easy to believe that this person was there with good intentions. However, this is exactly what happened with Saul soon after his encounter with Jesus on the road to Damascus. God had completely transformed his life overnight, and everyone was shocked to hear that he had gone from arresting Christians to preaching boldly in the name of the Lord. It was too good to be true! When Saul tried to meet with other believers, everyone was afraid of him, that is until Barnabas, who was a good and trusted man, stood by Saul and explained all that had happened.
Barnabasí name means ďson of encouragementĒ, and this was the first part he played in Saul (Paulís) life. He was known and respected, therefore he was able to build a bridge between Saul and other Christianís, speaking up in defense of the validity of Saulís faith and ministry. Without Barnabas, it would have been difficult for Saul to build connection with his fellow believers. Barnabas and Saul/Paul started their ministry together, but later went separate ways due to a disagreement. They were godly men, filled with the Spirit, and they enjoyed ministering together. However, even this disagreement was used by God to further His work. They each continued their ministry which doubled the missionary teams!
Like Barnabas, we are also called to encourage fellow Christians, especially those who are new to the faith or struggling. Acts 11:23 describes Barnabas as a man who was glad to see the grace of God in the lives of others. He exhorted and encouraged them to remain faithful to the Lord. We should always be looking for ways to appreciate, encourage, and support those who are living and serving in ways that bring honor and glory to God. Whether we minister together for a long while, or are simply together for a season, let us allow God to use us for His purpose.
Suggested prayer: Lord, show me the ways in which I can encourage someone today. Help me show appreciation for the hard work of those who are faithfully serving you. Use my life for your glory and to further Your work. In Jesusís name, amen.
1. Acts 9:26-27 (NLT).
Todayís Encounter was written by: Crystal B.
All articles on this website are written by
Richard (Dick) Innes unless otherwise stated.