Repurposed: Romans 1:1

“Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God...” 

7,100 words in Romans. After digging into the 18-word first verse, there are 7,082 glorious words left. But who’s counting?!

It is clear we perish when our purpose is poor. We perish when our purpose is murky and unclear. But poor and murky purposes do not have to be fatal conditions. No matter our age or how far we have drifted from the bona fide purpose for our life, God is willing and able to repurpose our life.

Take the author of Romans as an example. His testimony, hinted at in the first 18 words of this theological document, inspire hope. Twenty years before writing Romans (or thereabouts) he had been a Pharisee who hated Christianity, approved of the killing of the first Christ martyr and persecuted passionately all who followed Jesus. That was the life purpose he had accepted. Now here he is writing the most important theological Christian document ever written.

What changed? God repurposed him—at a high price: the death and resurrection of Christ. Reflecting on this new vision of Jesus, Paul realized that only the power of God in Christ could free any person from the power of Satan and he realized that the reason for his life was to announce this news. In fact, he said that he had “been set apart in his mother’s womb for this purpose” (Galatians 1:16). Repurposed, this hater of everything Jesus walked mile after mile after mile and wrote letter after letter to announce that God was at work in Jesus to set free and restore all persons to their God-designed and God-sized purpose.

This week: reflect on your purpose. Where did it come from? How did you get it? What is it doing to you? To others? Are you open to the possibility that God has a particular and unique purpose that fits you perfectly?