Yesterday morning in Yosemite Park Alex Honnold free-soloed up 3000 feet of El Capitan. He did this without a single rope to catch him as he scaled the sheer mountain wall. People are already calling this the “moon landing” of rock climbing, The greatest accomplishment in a decade.
In order to do this Alex trained for years and years. He is already a legend for his ability to absolutely turn off the fear in Paul’s inside his head. He is an extraordinary athlete and in sanely disciplined. He might even be a little crazy for trying this.
Is this the kind of person you have to be to change the world for God?
Do you have to be crazy disciplined in a little bit nuts like Alex? Do you have to be an incredible speaker with a southern accent like Billy Graham? Do you have to sacrifice everything and endure a decades of pain to launch a ministry like Mother Theresa?
Actually no, sometimes God uses quite ordinary people to change the world.
Take a look at this passage from the Bible (Colossians 4:7-18, NIV):
7 Tychicus will tell you all the news about me. He is a dear brother, a faithful minister and fellow servant in the Lord. 8 I am sending him to you for the express purpose that you may know about our circumstances and that he may encourage your hearts. 9 He is coming with Onesimus, our faithful and dear brother, who is one of you. They will tell you everything that is happening here.
OK, the first two people Paul talks about as he finishes up this little letter are Tychicus and Onesimus. Tychicus was a faithful friend who stood by Paul throughout his ministry. our world always needs more people who will just be faithful friends. Onesimus was a former slave that call lead to faith in Christ and gave him a new lease on life. This guy had an advocate and that advocate turned his life around.
10 My fellow prisoner Aristarchus sends you his greetings, as does Mark, the cousin of Barnabas. (You have received instructions about him; if he comes to you, welcome him.) 11 Jesus, who is called Justus, also sends greetings. These are the only Jews among my co-workers for the kingdom of God, and they have proved a comfort to me. 12 Epaphras, who is one of you and a servant of Christ Jesus, sends greetings. He is always wrestling in prayer for you, that you may stand firm in all the will of God, mature and fully assured. 13 I vouch for him that he is working hard for you and for those at Laodicea and Hierapolis. 14 Our dear friend Luke, the doctor, and Demas send greetings. 15 Give my greetings to the brothers and sisters at Laodicea, and to Nympha and the church in her house.
- Aristarchus-he traveled with Paul and was willing to go to prison along side Paul
- Mark-he flamed out originally in ministry. But, because he had an advocate he was restored and able to serve well. Who can I advocate for?
- Jesus, who is called Justus-no one knows who this man was. He was simply a person who faithfully served and God used his ministry. Am I willing to be faithful? Are you?
- Epaphras-he planted the church that Paul is writing too. And then he served and prayed as it’s Pastor.
- Luke-he used his considerable gifts and abilities to write more of the New Testament than any writer but Paul. How are you using the gifts God has given you?
- Demas-he was commended here but then he fell away from the faith as Paul mentioned it in a different letter. We never knew if he came back to faith in Christ. Hold onto your faith!
- Nympha-The early church met in homes. Are you willing to open your home to the work of the Gospel?
16 After this letter has been read to you, see that it is also read in the church of the Laodiceans and that you in turn read the letter from Laodicea.
17 Tell Archippus: “See to it that you complete the ministry you have received in the Lord.”
- Archippus-he was a man with a mission. He was given a ministry and told to complete it. What ministry has God given to you? What do you need to work on and in?
18 I, Paul, write this greeting in my own hand. Remember my chains. Grace be with you. -Colossians 4:7-18
You see, most of the people that God used for the building of his church and the changing of the world were rather ordinary people. They simply said yes to a great God. Have you said yes to God today? What ministry and what area of service has He called you to?