All in the Lord are saints but not all are saintly.
What is the difference? It is the miracle of salvation that makes us Saints. Salvation puts us in the “family of Christ”. We each have a choice of what to do from there. To be saintly or not? That is the question!
Phoebe was a saintly saint. In Romans 16, Paul mentions our lady of the week with the highest regards. She was delivering Paul’s letter to Rome. (The letter to the Romans which is in our Bibles to this day.) By way of introduction, Paul praised Phoebe as an honorable servant and he goes on to ask the Romans to receive her well and help her with anything she needs. She came highly recommend…a saint among the saints.
With Thanksgiving still fresh in my thoughts, I find myself thinking on WHO I am THANKful for. I have reached the age of maturity (56 years) to know that being thankful for “stuff” that only fades away isn’t genuine thankfulness. Everything I am looking at will eventually end up in a landfill somewhere, some day. The only things that we have that makes a difference, a real difference, that lasts for eternity, is our relationships with people. People matter. Relationships are why we are still breathing. (Because one day we won’t! We will stand before Christ and give an account for what we did with the talents He gave us.)
Because I’m still here, I believe there is part of me that I’m supposed to give to someone else and a part of them that I need. It is that process that makes us who we are today… Who we are period.
Some relationships make you better and some… not so much. You become friends with someone and before you know it, you find yourself thinking like that person in one area or another. They have an impact on you and your life. Relationships changed who you are. We choose everyday who we will impact and who we will allow to impact us. Some people just graze us, they go by so fast that they only have a minimal impact on our life. Others we marinate with, in long-term friendships. Both impact us and form us into who we are.
So, maybe it is my age or maybe it’s because I have experienced how short life can be and that we are not guaranteed even tomorrow. But I have to ask myself, Am I choosing wisely? Am I choosing wisely who I will give a little piece of myself to? And who I allow to impact who I am?
What can we learn from Phoebe? What makes someone a saintly saint? How do we know if we are? Is there some kind of litmus test? I believe there is.
With relationships in mind, back to the question, What makes a saintly saint? “I’ll know you’re Holy when you treat people right.” IF you are holy, which is what we are each called to be at salvation, then the fruits from your life have to show it. Fruits = actions towards others. It makes them who they are and me who I am. How I treat others is the real litmus test of who I am.
Phoebe became a saint when she committed her life to Christ, at salvation. But to become a saintly saint requires a daily commitment. Paul calls her a servant, meaning that she cared about people and gave her time and resources to helping the people who God put in her life. We each make that choice every day. We choose what we do with our day…what we do with our time. Every morning, we make a choice to ask God to use us today where we are or to ignore Him and live our day the way we want. We each choose to be or not to be a saintly saint every day.
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Your Turn: Are you intentional about who you are in relationship with? Are you intentional to pour yourself into those? Who has had a big impact on your life and how did that relationship change who you are? Leave a Reply ~ Cindy