Oh, did I type that outloud?
Victim to Victory
February 22, 2013
Could you imagine standing before a crowd of people, holding their undivided attention to preach the gospel… and in the middle of a break in your speech… in the dead silence…. You (and everyone else) hear a woman scream from the back of the crowd… “YOU… You… Son of a…. (Or whatever expletive of your choice you may enter here…) YOU killed my husband!”
That’s what Paul must have faced daily in his walk with preaching the gospel, having been a “religious leader” well versed in scripture, trained by the best of the best, he was a crucifier of Christians in Rome – he searched for them, dragged them from their homes, in front of their friends and families, children alike, and found great pleasure and praise from his Roman peers in crucifying them, torturing them, and then finally by God’s mercy – killing them.
Then to be called of Christ to face their friends and family again – only this time, to present the very same Gospel of Christ – in the same manner that was the commission of these people’s loved ones…. Are you kidding me???!!! Talk about having a “cross to bear…”
We don’t face humility to this extent – but if you are like me, you have people in your life that will not let you forget the mistakes that you have made in your past life – for me – that is my very own family. My friends are more forgiving but it is my NON-Christian friends who are MOST forgiving – That’s so sad isn’t it! Actually it shows the fruit of those who call themselves “Christian,” it actually makes it clear to me that although they believe this of themselves, most truly, Biblically, Christ does not.
Because of this truth, I have chosen to forgive, but I stay clear of my family- I have deleted most of my “Christian” friends off of my Facebook pages and because of the way that they allow Satan to use them to try to deter me I have found tremendous freedom!
I used to think that submission to their abuse would keep me humble, but all it really did was stump my witness and therefore my spiritual growth and keep my thoughts in the past to the point that I actually believed that I didn’t have anything to say to anyone because I had been such a rotten sinner…. And truth be told – frankly, I do not have anything to say… of my own accord that is – but what I do have to say is far greater – it is even called “Great.” It is the Great Commission and we are all called to adhere to the command!
I am proud to be one of the chosen for this call so I pray that my story reaches into the depths of your soul and you too realize that no matter what you have done, what you are doing, who you think you are, who others say you are – God says you are worth saving – so much so that he sent Jesus to die for you. Let this truth permeate your soul and move you into the life He has planned for you and do not be deceived – God is not mocked – so for those of you thinking that you are above the sinners of this world – let me remind you:
“We have all become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous deeds are like a polluted garment. We all fade like a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, take us away.” (Is. 64:6).
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’” (Matthew 7:21–22).
May the Lord God bless and keep you on the highway of holiness as you travel through this life and I pray that my life brings you inspiration and truth of the Gospel of Christ so that you will be encouraged to preach the Gospel and to share your testimony with others, for the time is short and the season is now.
Holly T. Ashley