THURSDAY January 21, 2021
Persecutor to Preacher
Afterward I went into the regions of Syria and Cilicia. And I was unknown by face to the churches of Judea which were in Christ. But they were hearing only, “He who formerly persecuted us now preaches the faith which he once tried to destroy.” And they glorified God in me.
Paul went into the area of Antioch and Tarsus where he was born (Acts 11:27-30). Yet not everyone in the churches in that region trusted Paul. They had heard all too well of his violent reputation in the past of killing Christians. They were very cautious of him. However, others rejoiced and glorified God. I love how God works!
When I got saved, one of the first things that happened to me was that the police would constantly stop to ask me questions. They knew of my violent reputation––always getting into fights––and now they had heard I was a Christian. I also began to receive all kinds of calls from people asking questions, “I heard you became a Christian, is that true?” I acknowledged my faith and asked them if they wanted to talk with me.
Incredibly, my father, mother, sisters and brother all came to know Christ. Even my ninety-two-year-old grandmother accepted Jesus, right on her deathbed, and it happened that way for others in my family. I remember how I snuck into the hospital in LA, while everyone else was asleep, to see my grandpa.
As my family was predominately Catholic, they did not want me, a Christian, to speak to him. Yet I was able to give my grandpa the whole Gospel. He started to cry, accepted the Lord, and within two weeks he passed away. Now I have the hope of seeing all of them in heaven!
Think of your life. When people hear of your commitment to Christ and see you living according to the Word of God, they will glorify God. Yet others may mock you. It is important to realize not to give up praying for your friends and family. The Lord desires to use your life. He will divinely touch their lives. Through prayer, just as Jesus Christ was revealed to us, He will reveal Himself to them!
None is a Christian minister who has not been ordained by the laying on of unseen hands.
For more from Raul Ries, please visit SomebodyLovesYou.com!