As I was chatting to a local church leader and a very good friend of mine about coming to preach in his church in a few weeks we started to joke about how he would introduce me and more specifically what title he would give me. They’re a few he could choose:
Stephen McGuire – CVM Scotland Director.
Stephen McGuire – Cinnamon Network Scottish Ambassador.
Or by the time I come to speak in his church, Stephen McGuire – AOG Probationary Minister.
As I left that conversation I felt really challenged by the Holy Spirit that none of those titles meant a thing and that what I really wanted to be known as was Stephen McGuire – a man having a go for Jesus. An ordinary bloke gripped by his faith and getting stuck in, sometimes messing up, sometimes getting it wrong but always willing to have a go. That’s how I want to be known!
As we read through scripture we encounter loads of ordinary guys who were gripped by their faith and had a go. I can’t help but get inspired by the stories of these guys. Guys like Moses, an 80-year-old shepherd who led a nation out of Egypt and through the Red Sea. Then there’s Nathan, a prophet with loads of courage who didn’t shirk the responsibility of delivering the hard messages to Kind David. What about Peter, he began life as a fisherman and ended up walking on water and boldly proclaiming the Gospel.
Then we start to look around us and we see guys who aren’t looking for accolades or fame, they just want to serve Jesus. Like the guy who puts the chairs out every week, most people don’t even know who does it but they are always done. Or the guy coming off a night shift and coming straight to church to lead worship. What about the guy willing to give up his job and salary to follow God’s call and put everything on the line.
Acts 4 describes Peter and John as ordinary, unschooled men yet they led thousands of people to Jesus. Never believe the lie that God can’t use you and your shortcomings to do something amazing. God took a shepherd boy and made him King of Israel. God used a donkey after all to deliver a message. God uses ordinary people in extraordinary ways.
There is a great line in the film Rambo where John Rambo played by Sylvester Stallone says “Live for nothing, or die for something”. I want to live my life in such a way that I die doing my best at having a go for Jesus in whatever path or direction he calls me. I love what Jesus says about this in Matthew 23:11-12:
Do you want to stand out? Then step down. Be a servant. If you puff yourself up, you’ll get the wind knocked out of you. But if you’re content to simply be yourself, your life will count for plenty. (Message Version)
God takes nobodies and makes them somebody… all by His grace.
Image Credit: Taylor Nicole