I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength, that he considered me trustworthy, appointing me to his service. Even though I was once a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent man, I was shown mercy because I acted in ignorance and unbelief. The grace of our Lord was poured out on me abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. 1 Timothy 1:12-14
The apostle Paul writes to his ‘true son in the faith’, Timothy, to challenge him to stand up to those teaching false doctrine. In doing so, Paul recites his own personal thankfulness that God saved him. I love the phrase “I once was…”. Sound familiar? The blind man said it “I once was blind, but now I see”. The former English slave trading captain, John Newton wrote the very same words in his song Amazing Grace as he reflected on his own conversion and previous perversion. Paul would write similar words that describe the transforming power of the gospel and a personal encounter with God. 1 Corinthians 6 provides a similar sin list as 1 Timothy, followed by the word “and such were some of you”.
How about me? Am I thankful for the Lord Jesus and that he not only saved me, but appointed me to His service? I am beyond words. I was all those things terrible (if not outwardly, certainly in my heart). But, day by day, He is transforming me into His image.
God, my biggest question will be why? Why me? Meanwhile, I am grateful to be included. Please forgive my shortcomings and sin. May the power that raised Jesus from the dead work in my life and as an extension, become available to all I meet and love in Your name. I am thankful for the changes in me. I am thankful for Christ Jesus!