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Is it time?

Never believe that a few caring people can't change the world. For, indeed, that's all who ever have. (Margaret Mead)

“‘I’m sending you off to open the eyes of the outsiders so they can see the difference between dark and light, and choose light, see the difference between Satan and God, and choose God. I’m sending you off to present my offer of sins forgiven, and a place in the family, inviting them into the company of those who begin real living by believing in me.’ “What could I do, King Agrippa? I couldn’t just walk away from a vision like that! I became an obedient believer on the spot. I started preaching this life-change—this radical turn to God and everything it meant in everyday life—right there in Damascus, went on to Jerusalem and the surrounding countryside, and from there to the whole world." (Acts 26:17-20)

The Apostle Paul is on the 'witness stand' before King Agrippa, brought there by Festus, the new governor of Cesarea. The religious leaders want to shut Paul's message of eternal hope down, but Festus is hard-pressed to find anything he can accuse him of doing. It is just possible the cries of these leaders may result in something they didn't count on happening. In fact, we see the account of his having taken the 'witness stand':  "But Agrippa did answer: “Keep this up much longer and you’ll make a Christian out of me!” Paul, still in chains, said, “That’s what I’m praying for, whether now or later, and not only you but everyone listening today, to become like me—except, of course, for this prison jewelry!” The king and the governor, along with Bernice and their advisors, got up and went into the next room to talk over what they had heard. They quickly agreed on Paul’s innocence, saying, “There’s nothing in this man deserving prison, let alone death.” (vs. 28-31) I doubt the religious leaders of that day ever expected their plan to backfire like that! When we have a message that is meant to be shared, there is little that can ever be done to shut it down!

One person - faithful to use what he has been given - unstoppable and fearless even as he was bound in prison chains. That speaks of a tremendous faith, but it reassures me that God is with those who are faithful to use what he has graciously blessed with! We often think, "What can one man or woman do?" God's thoughts on the matter are pretty much, "What can't one man or woman do when their steps are ordered by me?" It is all a matter of perspective, isn't it? We see the impossibilities - God provides all we need to endure even what others see as total impossibility! I think the challenge to us this morning is to stop using the words "I can't" and start saying "In Christ I can do all things". That very change in mindset can make us unstoppable witnesses in a very confused and dark world! We aren't to just march in place - we are being 'sent off' into the places only we can reach. We may not see our reach as 'significant', but if we are called to be the ones to go, that call makes our reach quite significant indeed. We might want to walk away at the first obstacle we face, but what we have been given demands we press past those obstacles and share what we know will change the world. Isn't about time we embrace our call to be 'world-changers'? Just askin!

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