Titus 1:5 - Brother Adan and Brother Paul
Titus 1:5 "For this reason I left you in Crete, that you might set in order what remains, and appoint elders in every city as I directed you," (NASB)
Last Wednesday night's service was a rare opportunity to look at the work of another brother in Christ. Brother Adan Villanueva, who pastors a number of churches in the mountainous country of Honduras, brought a simple message that spoke of Jesus and touched my heart.
As our pastor pointed out, Brother Adan looks as if he's in his fifties, but is actually in his seventies. And as he spoke it was hard to not look at the man and his broad smile and not see the face of the Lord.
His message was of Jesus' love for us. He read scripture after scripture that said in so many words.........Jesus loves me.
It's hard for me to describe the effect of Brother Adan's words on me that night..........nothing was forced........but he made a connection with me that was both riveting and invigorating..........and spoke into my heart what the Lord wanted me to hear that night.
Brother Adan reminded me of Brother Paul who thousands of years earlier set out in his part of the world on essentially the same mission as Brother Adan............founding churches and then appointing elders in every city to carry on the work of the Lord in Paul's absence.
What really strikes my heart tonight is how the Lord uses all of us if we're willing. Brother Adan and Brother Paul opened their hearts to Him, and the Lord's Spirit took up residence. They did and are doing exactly what the Lord wants all of us to do.
But going beyond that, I have to ask myself if I've opened myself up to be used of the Lord or am I just sitting back in relative comfort waiting for something to come along that won't require a lot of stretch. The Lord's work can sometimes be taxing on the flesh........the mountain trails for Brother Adan are very long and have to be hard to negotiate........the roads Paul walked between the cities he served..........the nights under the stars..........the loneliness of being in prison and seeing most of your friends leave his side.
Would I have the mettle to walk the paths of both of these men if the Lord called on me to do it? Would I take up my cross and follow Him?
I pray to the Lord that He will never leave my side in whatever He has chosen for me to do. Because with His Strength I can do all things...........without it my flesh will surely fail me.
Love in Jesus,
"But now God has placed the members, each one of them, in the body, just as He desired." (1 Corinthians 12:18 NASB)
"Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960,1962,1963,1968,1971,1972,1973,1975,1977,1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission."
This devotional was originally posted on CCI-Devo - Daily Group Devotionals on April 16, 2004 in post #528. It was written by Jim Ross, a former United Pentecostal Church member, who attends Christian Challenge International, the sponsor of the devotional group. The devotional is the copyright of Jim Ross and is reprinted on this site by permission.
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August 23, 1997
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