“And the leaders of the church had nothing to add to what I was preaching. (By the way, their reputation as great leaders made no difference to me, for God has no favorites.) Instead, they saw that God had given me the responsibility of preaching the gospel to the Gentiles, just as he had given Peter the responsibility of preaching to the Jews. For the same God who worked through Peter as the apostle to the Jews also worked through me as the apostle to the Gentiles. In fact, James, Peter, and John, who were known as pillars of the church, recognized the gift God had given me, and they accepted Barnabas and me as their co-workers. They encouraged us to keep preaching to the Gentiles, while they continued their work with the Jews. Their only suggestion was that we keep on helping the poor, which I have always been eager to do.” Galatians 2:6-10 NLT
Paul was well received by the church leaders. Although Paul was not one of the original 12 disciples chosen by Jesus, he was welcomed by the likes of James, Peter, and John. This had to be encouraging to Paul. Even though these men were in Christ before Paul, they didn't act arrogantly toward Paul. Although Paul had been given special revelation from Jesus, he didn't act arrogantly toward them. There was a common unity among them. Each welcomed the other as part of the body of Christ. Peter was the apostle to the Jews. Paul was the apostle to the Gentiles. Together they served God in their specific callings.
Each of us has a place in the body of Christ. Knowing God's call, His place for us to serve, and our willingness to work together are all vital parts of accomplishing God's purpose as the church. We all have specific roles to play and responsibilities to fulfill. None of us can work alone. We need each other!Rather than comparing ourselves with one another, we should be complementing one another in our work. Comparison creates inferiority issues. Appreciation and complementary actions edify (build up) the church. God has no favorites. James 2:1 says this: “My dear brothers and sisters, how can you claim to have faith in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ if you favor some people over others?” NLT
Let us resolve to appreciate each and every person in the body of Christ. Everyone is important and needed. None of us deserve to be a part of God's family, but thank God, He has called and chosen us.
Prayer for today: Father, in Jesus name, help me serve You faithfully and responsibly. May I compliment the body of Christ with my service. Help me to humbly recognize that the only reason I'm here is by Your grace.
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Rev. Curtis Norris