Over the years, I have fallen in love with Scripture. I love pinning over the stories of old, meanwhile seeing a reflection in the mirror of my own. And today is no different as I pick up to read the book of 2 Corinthians.
Paul wrote this letter in A.D. 55 to the believers in the hustling and bustling city of Corinth, located in southern Greece. It bragged of two busy ports, providing an eclectic mix of both Roman and Greek cultures. It steeped rich in commerce and culinary experience, tourism and traffic congestion, entertainment and athletic events…to name a few. One could smell the fresh scent of sea salt everytime the breeze came blowing in. Herein lies the challenge of describing this vibrant, diverse, and sprawling city of old: the paradoxes are puzzling.
Rich and Poor.
Truth and Falsehood.
Free and Slave.
Self-righteous and Amoral.
Socialites. Gossip columns. Homeless shelters. Overcrowding. A city boasting with outward extravagance, yet inwardly cratering to the cries of this world. And within the walls of this city lived people who look just like you and me. Businessmen, lawyers, farmers, moms, uber drivers, doctors and paramedics. Techies, college students, babies, politicians, activists, librarians, teachers, and the kid next door. The city of Corinth was crowded with people who have stories and dreams and passions. They were busy living their life, and Paul admonishes the Christians to live differently.
Go against the tide. Stand out. Speak up. Be silent. Be still. Swim upstream. Now downstream. Be different. Why?
Because you are a people that God calls His own
“Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, To the church of God in Corinth, together with all his holy people throughout Achaia:” 2 Cor. 1:1
Although the Christians in Corinth were struggling with sin and wracked with problems–Jesus had already resolved the issue. He saved them. Died for their sins. Then set them apart. You see, He didn’t focus on their past because He saw their potential. Jesus is urging us to be forward-looking.
God chooses to use us in dark-lit rooms to shine brightly. Wherever you are. Whatever your story. God can use you.