Instruments of Grace

God places us in every one of our locations and circumstances so that we might be instruments of his grace to the world around us.

One time in a high school baseball game I was playing in, my team just needed one more out to win. I was playing right field when my coach moved me to an exact spot in the outfield. He moved me way back, almost against the fence. The batter crushed the ball. I froze and looked up. Without having to move a single step, the ball came right to me and I made the catch to end the game. 

My coach had positioned me exactly where I needed to be in that situation to make that catch. 

In a far greater way, God sovereignly positions his people in their geographic locations and circumstances to use them as instruments of his grace to the surrounding world. 

Instruments of God’s Grace

God so often sovereignly draws someone new to himself by sovereignly placing his people in the right moments, at the right spots, at the right time as instruments of his grace. The story of Naaman and his healing in 2 Kings 5 illustrates this. 

Naaman was a commander of the Syrian army, an enemy of God’s people in Israel. At one point, the Syrians went on a raid into Israel and basically kidnapped a little girl. They took her back to Syria with them and she was made to work as a servant for Naaman’s wife. 

While Naaman had a great position and the support of his king, he was tragically suffering from leprosy, which then was largely a death sentence. But this little girl encourages him to go visit the prophet Elisha who could cure him of his leprosy. Naaman goes and visits Elisha, and though hesitant at first to Elisha’s prescribed method of being healed (washing in the Jordan River seven times), Naaman eventually relents at the urging of his servants, washes in the river and is healed.

But even more importantly than the physical healing, Naaman finds spiritual healing through this experience. He surrenders himself in worship to God alone.

Even In Hard Places

Do you have a high enough view of God’s sovereignty to believe that He can work something good through the kidnapping of a little girl and bring someone into His kingdom for eternity? Do you believe God might place us in hard locations and hard circumstances to proclaim and reflect his glory to those around you? Or do you only believe God exists to keep you comfortable, safe, and isolated from the rest of the world?

Consider Acts 8:1-4. This is right after Stephen was stoned to death. It says, “And Saul approved of his execution. And there arose on that day a great persecution against the church in Jerusalem, and they were all scattered throughout the regions of Judah and Samaria, except the apostles. Devout men buried Stephen and made great lamentation over him. But Saul was ravaging the church, and entering house after house, he dragged off men and women and committed them to prison. Now those who were scattered went about preaching the word.” 

They were scattered because of persecution, yet they went right on preaching the word. So God flipped that persecution around and used it as a way to sovereignly spread the gospel throughout that region, just as he sovereignly used the little girl’s kidnapping to draw Naaman to find both physical and spiritual healing. 

And he places us in every one of our locations and circumstances so that we might be instruments of his grace to this hurting world. 

Even If The World Thinks You’re “Small”

Consider another amazing thing about the story of Naaman. Along with Elisha, it’s ultimately a little girl and servants who are the main instruments of God’s grace into Naaman’s life. 

Here’s the point: you are not too insignificant to be used by God. 

There isn’t such a thing as someone too low down the social ladder that God can’t use them to make a difference in someone else’s life.

You are not too insignificant to be used by God. 

Your town is not too small or insignificant for God to do big things there. Your church is not too small for God to use you to impact your community. You are not too young to be used by God to impact your family, your friends, your school, your community, or even this world for the glory of God. 

Don’t limit or minimize what God might want to do through you. God uses what is weak from a worldly perspective – like a little girl and servants – that he might shame the strong and show the world his power and glory. 

So don’t think for a second that God can’t do big things in small places and through small people. Because that is precisely when his power is most fully displayed. 

God sovereignly places you in the exact locations and circumstances – even hard ones – where you can glorify him as an instrument of his grace in the lives of those around you.

Embrace how He wants to use you today.

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

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