Read Romans 1.1-15

                Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God, which he promised beforehand through his prophets in the holy scriptures, the gospel concerning his Son, who was descended from David according to the flesh and was declared to be Son of God with power according to the spirit of holiness by resurrection from the dead, Jesus Christ our Lord, through whom we have received grace and apostleship to bring about the obedience of faith among all the Gentiles for the sake of his name, including yourselves who are called to belong to Jesus Christ,

                 To all God’s beloved in Rome, who are called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

                 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is proclaimed throughout the world.  For God, whom I serve with my spirit by announcing the gospel of his Son, is my witness that without ceasing I remember you always in my prayers, asking that by God’s will I may somehow at last succeed in coming to you.  For I am longing to see you so that I may share with you some spiritual gift to strengthen you–

or rather so that we may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith, both yours and mine.

                 I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that I have often intended to come to you (but thus far have been prevented), in order that I may reap some harvest among you as I have among the rest of the Gentiles.  I am a debtor both to Greeks and to barbarians, both to the wise and to the foolish –hence my eagerness to proclaim the gospel to you also who are in Rome.

 

From Pastor Dorothy Brownlee, Chapel Hill Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Wellsburg

First impressions are lasting impressions.  That’s what my parents always told me. Always put your best foot forward; they told me that too. I think when Paul encountered God on the road to Damascus, God put his best foot forward and made a lasting impression. In the intro to the book of Romans the apostle Paul lets the Romans know he is consumed by the gospel of Jesus Christ. He is a servant of Jesus, called to be an apostle, and set apart by God for the sharing of the gospel. He cannot wait to see them and share the faith and encourage them and have them do the same with him. The Gentiles are his mission. The gospel is supposed to be shared, faith is to be proclaimed.

Is that the impression we give to others when we introduce ourselves to people we meet? We call ourselves disciples, we say we have no creed but Christ, we speak where the scriptures speak. Our introduction should be ” _________, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be …..a teacher, cook, janitor, lawyer, bartender, CEO, police officer, firefighter, tattoo artist, garbage collector, truck driver, lab tech, sales clerk, nurse, doctor, insurance agent, student, social worker, parent, guardian, volunteer, set apart for the gospel of God.” God has set us apart in the space we find ourselves. Share your faith and encourage those with you.

 

Ever faithful and encouraging God we pray your kingdom come,

 your will be done thru every loving act we do.

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