This week I got to catch up with one of my best friends over a cup of coffee. Maurice (Moe) Clark is a guy I was blessed to walk with in discipleship several years ago. He is now pastoring at a church in Louisville where he leads in community, discipleship, and outreach. He shared a disciple making nugget with me that I can't stop thinking about.
In Acts 10-11, God sends an angel to a man named Cornelius who was a centurion of a Roman cohort. The angel tells Cornelius to arrange a meeting between his family and the apostle Peter, where he would hear the good news of the gospel. Peter was in Joppa, an estimated 35 miles away, when Cornelius sent for him to come visit his home in Caesarea. In chapter 11 Peter gives a recap of what the angel told Cornelius.
"And he told us how he had seen the angel stand in his house and say, 'Send to Joppa and bring Simon who is called Peter; he will declare to you a message by which you will be saved, you and all your household.'"Acts 11:13-14 ESV
When Peter shares the gospel, the Holy Spirit moves, and Cornelius' entire family is converted.
What Moe pointed out to me was how interesting it is that God would have the angel send Cornelius to Peter rather than just having the angel share the message itself. If you think about it, the angel knew the message. The angel would have had supernatural gifting to communicate the message. The angel would also have been the more impressive and spectacular messenger. But God chose to use a man instead. Peter was a human being with limitations, flaws, and very little significance compared to the angel, and yet God says "I want to get the job done through him."
This speaks to the incredibly special calling on our lives as disciples, to be God's chosen instruments to make disciples. Of all God has to choose from, including super natural beings, He chooses to use us. Think about that! How humbling is that? How empowering and purpose giving is that? God wants to use you and the people you disciple to reach the world as his messengers. It's an identity that changes everything.
May we remind ourselves of this powerful reality each day. Start each day with the mindset that you are God's chosen instrument. As a Christian that is a part of your identity. What's more encouraging is that He goes before us, orchestrating encounters, and preparing people's hearts for the message. It is God who convicts, draws, and saves. We simply need to be obedient to walk in our appointed role as chosen messengers. Here's the challenge. Pray daily for opportunities, step out of your house in faith on a mission to share the gospel with someone, and believe God will use you. We can believe this because as crazy as it sounds He chooses to do it that way.
"Soup" Campbell is legendary in Memphis and around the country for disciple making. He has an inspiring and convicting commitment to the Great Commission where he lives. Please take time to read this article about his ministry in his Memphis neighborhood; you won't be disappointed.