Romans – Wayne Barber/Part 81
By: Dr. Wayne Barber
|By: Dr. Wayne Barber; ©2007|
|Paul gives greetings from his traveling and ministry companions. Dr. Barber uses these greetings to explain how important fellow workers are when you are involved in any type of ministry.|
One thing that’s interesting to me is that in Romans 12:1-2 the Apostle Paul begins talking about a very important subject, the subject of relationships. As a matter of fact, there are two relationships he speaks of. First of all, there is our relationship to God which is encompassed into two verses that we’ve just about brought into every message since that time. We daily present our bodies. We surrender to Christ. Daily we surrender our minds to His Word. Obeying Christ means to obey His Word. Our relationship is one of obedience and surrender to Him.
Then from Romans 12:3 all the way to the very end of the book he’s talking about our relationships to one another. As I think of all the relationships that are in a congregation. I think about all the circles of each person’s relationships. Somebody said that humility is giving credit to the people God has used to get you where you are, the relationships you’ve had along the way, people God has put into your life. The Lord Jesus had twelve disciples around Him. But even out of that twelve there were three who were the closest to Him, Peter and James and John. Relationships, relationships, relationships.
Well, the Apostle Paul comes to another list of some relationships, some companions who were very close to him. It’s not so much now Paul sending his greetings, but now his companions speak up and send their greetings to the church that is in Rome. Somebody asked me one day, “How do you do all the things around the church?” Well, I’ve been leaning on our staff for a long time. I want you to know there are some guys on my staff who are some of the most precious guys I’ve ever been associated with in all of my life. The elders and the staff are like another family to me. I trust every one of them with my life. Sometimes they’re not noticed. They do things behind the scene. But they’re companions in the ministry.
If for some reason I was writing a letter to someone and wanted to send greetings from the church, I would bring in these companions because they’re the ones in the thick and the thin. When it gets difficult they’re the ones who are right along beside me. Again, you may not see them, but I know better than to think that I’m doing anything. God’s doing it and He’s using many people to get the job done. That’s the way I think it was with the Apostle Paul. He’s given us a list earlier, but that list was the greetings that he sent to those he knew, maybe not intimately, but by acquaintance or by association of some kind. Now his companions in the ministry step forward. It’s almost like Paul’s saying, “You know, guys, if you want to see the success of what God has been doing through me, I’ve been leaning on my staff. They want to say a word before I close the letter. They want to send their greetings to the Christians who are there in Rome.”
Remember relationships. As we’re going through this, think of how these people were companions to the Apostle Paul and how precious they were to him and now they send their greetings to those in Rome.
We’re going to look first of all at Romans 16:21. “Timothy my fellow worker greets you.” Timothy is sending his greeting. It’s no wonder the Apostle Paul puts Timothy first. Of all the companions of Paul, Timothy is the best known. He’s mentioned in twenty-four verses in the New Testament. We’re going to spend a little time on Timothy, because we know more about Timothy than we do anybody else in the list that Paul mentions.
First of all, it seems likely that Timothy came to know Christ when Paul was on his first missionary journey over in the area of Derbe and Lystra. Look over in Acts 14:1 so we can see this in scripture. We’re going to just take from the Word to see how Paul met Timothy, where he got saved, etc. Paul calls him his son in the faith. Acts 14, and we’ll begin in verse 1: “And it came about that in Iconium they entered the synagogue of the Jews together, and spoke in such a manner that a great multitude believed, both of Jews and of Greeks. But the Jews who disbelieved stirred up the minds of the Gentiles, and embittered them against the brethren. Therefore they spent a long time there speaking boldly with reliance upon the Lord, who was bearing witness to the word of His grace, granting that signs and wonders be done by their hands. But the multitude of the city was divided; and some sided with the Jews, and some with the apostles. And when an attempt was made by both the Gentiles and the Jews with their rulers, to mistreat and to stone them, they became aware of it and fled to the cities of Lycaonia, Lystra and Derbe, and the surrounding region;…”
Now when they first went into this area, obviously, they were preaching the gospel of grace, the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. Later on they come back to this area. Turn over to 16:1. Here’s where we see the mention of Timothy. It says, “And he came also to Derbe and to Lystra. And behold, a certain disciple was there, named Timothy, the son of a Jewish woman who was a believer, but his father was a Greek.” So in other words, Timothy’s mother and grandmother were Jewish, but his father was a Greek. He was half Jew and half Gentile.
It becomes obvious from 2 Timothy 1:5 the influence that his godly mother and godly grandmother had on him. Paul talks about this, and this is important in understanding the upbringing of Timothy. It says, “For I am mindful of the sincere faith within you, which first dwelt in your grandmother Lois, and your mother Eunice, and I am sure that it is in you as well.” The seed was planted deep in his life by his mother and grandmother, and when Paul came to Lystra and that area he became a believer. Paul comes back to that area and sees that Timothy stands out among the group. Everyone spoke highly of Timothy.
Acts 16:2 continues, “and he was well spoken of by the brethren who were in Lystra and Iconium.” Now, you’ve got to remember something that’s going on about this time. The Apostle Paul became very disappointed that John Mark had left him. By the way, have you ever wondered why he did that? I think John Mark left him because he couldn’t handle the message of grace. John Mark, a Jew, had grown up under that influence; and when he heard Paul preach nothing but grace and not works, I don’t think he could handle it. He bailed out on the Apostle Paul, and Paul had become very disappointed in John Mark. As a result he turned his attention towards this man who stood out in the area of Lystra and Derbe.
Paul knew that Timothy was only half Jew and had never been circumcised. That was important because the Jews were very bitter. If he brought a half Gentile amongst them who was not circumcised, that would cause problems. So therefore, he circumcised him before he allowed him to be on the team. Acts 16:3 says, “Paul wanted this man to go with him; and he took him and circumcised him because of the Jews who were in those parts, for they all knew that his father was a Greek.” He was then set apart as an evangelist by the church who expressed great confidence in him.
Paul talks about that confidence. In 1 Timothy 4:14 he says to Timothy, “Do not neglect the spiritual gift within you, which was bestowed upon you through prophetic utterance with the laying on of hands by the presbytery.” When they laid hands on someone it was nothing spiritual – well it was spiritual in a way, but it was nothing of God. They were not bestowing power on anybody. They were recognizing that God’s hand was already on this person. Therefore, they would lay hands on them and thereby, show the great confidence of the calling God had put upon their life.
Well, Timothy’s loyalty began to spread and people began to find out about him and by the time that Paul wrote the book of Philippians everybody knew about Timothy. It says in Philippians 2:22, “But you know of his proven worth that he served with me in the furtherance of the gospel like a child serving his father.” There is no more beautiful picture than that of a man who is a servant of the Lord Jesus Christ, a man loyal to a man like the Apostle Paul. It didn’t matter the credit that came to him. He was willing to serve him like a child would serve a father. People knew this about Timothy. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if people could say that about you and me? There was a loyalty there. There was a servant heart in Timothy.
Paul trusted Timothy probably as much as he trusted anybody in his lifetime. He and Barnabas had some problems; but it was Timothy who he seemed to give the assignments to that were the most difficult and the most critical. I’m going to walk you through some of those. When Paul was forced out of Philippi, it appears that he left Timothy there to help in caring for the infant church. Timothy followed Paul to Berea where once again he was left behind by Paul, this time in company with Silas to minister to the new church. I mean, constantly he has this responsibility placed upon him. He met Paul in Athens where he rejoined him but not for long. He was again assigned the task of going back north to Thessalonica to encourage and strengthen the church that was there. Paul left Athens and went to Corinth and it was not long before Timothy joined him there.
We don’t know much about the next five years of his life but we do know that he must have been with Paul for some of his ministry in Ephesus on Paul’s third missionary journey. Paul writes the Corinthians from Ephesus that he’s sending Timothy to them. So he must have been with him. In 1 Corinthians 4:17 he says, “For this reason I have sent to you Timothy, who is my beloved and faithful child in the Lord, and he will remind you of my ways which are in Christ, just as I teach everywhere in every church.”
Then he says in 1 Corinthians 16:10, “Now if Timothy comes, see that he is with you without cause to be afraid; for he is doing the Lord’s work, as I also am.” When Paul arrived in Corinth after his completion of his work in Ephesus Timothy was with him. How do we know that? Because that’s where he wrote the book of Romans and we’re reading the fact Timothy’s with him sending his greetings. We know that he had to be with Paul.
When Paul’s work in Macedonia and Greece was over he made final preparations to go to Jerusalem. Timothy was one of the party sent on ahead to await Paul’s arrival at Troas. Acts 20:3ff, “And there he spent three months, and when a plot was formed against him by the Jews as he was about to set sail for Syria, he determined to return through Macedonia. And he was accompanied by Sopater of Berea, the son of Pyrrhus; and by Aristarchus and Secundus of the Thessalonians; and Gaius of Derbe, and Timothy; and Tychicus and Trophimus of Asia. But these had gone on ahead and were waiting for us at Troas.” Timothy was in that group.
Verse 6 goes on to say, “And we sailed from Philippi after the days of Unleavened Bread, and came to them at Troas within five days; and there we stayed seven days.” Once again Timothy drops out of sight. You see him at critical times in Paul’s life. Timothy was in his first imprisonment with Paul when he wrote the letters to Philippi, Colossae, and Philemon. After Paul’s release from prison it appears that Timothy went with Paul when he visited Asia. Paul continued on to Macedonia, but he left Timothy behind in Ephesus to take care of some of the problems in the church.
Paul writes to him from his last imprisonment in 2 Timothy. Now I want to tell you, when you’ve worked beside somebody for a long period of time and you’ve watched that individual not willing to take any credit for themselves but just to step alongside and be loyal and faithful and a part of the work, you begin to learn you can trust this person. You begin to learn that they can carry out responsibility. That becomes very dear to your heart. All the way from the very first meeting Timothy had been alongside Paul. He appears everywhere. Everywhere Paul went Timothy appeared. Paul would assign him here and assign him there or leave him here or whatever. When he’s in a prison in Rome, the last imprisonment that Paul was in before he was martyred for the faith, he wrote to Timothy. Listen to what he says to him. How precious the relationship with Timothy had become. It says in 2 Timothy 1:4, “longing to see you, even as I recall your tears, so that I may be filled with joy.” Then down in the last part of the book, in 2 Timothy 4:9, he says, “Make every effort to come to me soon.” You’ve got to hear the heartbeat of this guy.
You work together. You go through the thick and the thin. You begin to share together in the heart and what happens is down the road that becomes very tender in your relationship to somebody else. Paul in his last days, knowing that he was going to be martyred for the faith, says, “Timothy, make every effort you possibly can to come to me soon. I miss you, Timothy.”
Then in 2 Timothy 4:21, “Make every effort to come before winter.” The last recorded words of the Apostle Paul were written to Timothy. No wonder he heads the list in sending his greetings to the people in Rome. Let me ask you a question as we’re going through this. Who do you know who would come alongside you that way? Think back over your life and the ministry God has given to you or the work that God has put around you and the people who are faithful to Christ who are friends in the ministry. I look back and remember the valleys we have been through in this church. I remember the tough times and the tough decisions we’ve had to make as elders and the weeping that we’ve gone through in making those decisions. I think about the staff and all the fun we’ve had but all the difficulties we’ve worked our way through. And I tell you what, folks. When it comes down to it, those relationships are what it’s all about in the Christian walk.
The Apostle Paul is allowing these companions to come alongside him now and send their greetings to Rome. They’re very special people to Paul. The people in the other list were special, yes. These were even more special. These he knew intimately. These were his companions. This is the staff stepping forward and sending their greetings to the Christians there at Rome.
Now, you can’t miss this. These are guys who have walked right alongside Paul. Here’s Timothy. He’s the main one. We don’t know that much about the rest of them, but we know Timothy. We can understand why the Philippians said there’s nobody like Timothy because of the servant heart this man had. He steps forward and says, “I want to send my greetings to Rome because I’m with Paul over here in Corinth.”
Well, Paul moves on from Timothy to some others. Verse 21 reads, “Timothy my fellow worker greets you, and so do Lucius and Jason and Sosipater.” There are three mentioned there. Then he says, “my kinsmen.” We struggle with that word “kinsmen.” Does that mean his cousin or his uncle? No. He means my Jewish kinfolk. In other words, because of being of the nation of Israel we are all kin together. We’ve addressed that already. I’m not going to go back and do that again.
Who were these people? Lucius was probably the Lucius mentioned in Acts 13:1, if you want to turn over there. He would have been one of the ones who commissioned Paul and Barnabas to the mission field. Verse 1 says, “Now there were at Antioch, in the church that was there, prophets and teachers: Barnabas, and Simeon who was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen who had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul.” Lucius was from Cyrene. That’s basically all we know about him but he must have been very close to Paul and with Paul on many occasions. He was there when Paul was commissioned to the mission field.
Jason was most likely the Jason who entertained Paul and Silas in his home when they first came to Thessalonica. Now if you have studied 1 and 2 Thessalonians, you remember the problem Jason got into by being associated with these guys. It was no fun, really. Let me go back and remind you of Acts 17:5. Now this is when he was dragged out of his house. He was taken before the magistrate and finally had to be released on bail. “But the Jews, becoming jealous and taking along some wicked men from the market place, formed a mob and set the city in an uproar; and coming upon the house of Jason, they were seeking to bring them out to the people. And when they did not find them, they began dragging Jason (This is one of those times Jason probably wondered as he was being dragged out of his house, ‘Am I sure I’m glad to be Paul’s friend?’) and some brethren before the city authorities, shouting, ‘These men who have upset the world have come here also; and Jason has welcomed them, and they all act contrary to the decrees of Caesar, saying that there is another king, Jesus.’ And they stirred up the crowd and the city authorities who heard these things. And when they had received a pledge [or bail money] from Jason and the others, they released them.” That’s all we really know about Jason. But he was a close companion to Paul and was with him when Paul was writing his letters so Jason steps forward and sends his greetings.
Then Paul mentions Sosipater. The name, Sopater, is mentioned in Acts 20:4. Apparently they are the same person, but we don’t know much about them. If they are the same person, he was one of Paul’s first converts at Berea and one of the delegates Paul took with him to Jerusalem.
So again, three more companions. We’ve got Timothy. We’ve got Lucius. We’ve got Jason. We’ve got Sosipater. Then the next name, Tertius, is mentioned. I like this one. Look in verse 22. “I, Tertius, who write this letter, greet you in the Lord.” Now, wait a minute. What did he say? I, Tertius, who what? Who write this letter. I thought Paul was writing this letter. Well, now, hang on before you get all nervous and bent out of shape. Paul was dictating this letter to Tertius. Now why was Paul doing this? We don’t really know this, but there seems to be some suspicion that Paul had a serious eye problem. I want you to look over in Galatians 4:13. This is where it comes from. We don’t know this for a fact, but it appears this way. There is a possibility that he contracted some kind of eye disease and as a result of that had difficulty seeing and had to get somebody else to write his letter. He couldn’t see to write.
In Galatians 4:13 he says, “but you know that it was because of a bodily illness that I preached the gospel to you the first time.” Now what kind of bodily illness? We don’t know. Verse 14 continues, “and that which was a trial to you in my bodily condition you did not despise of loathe, but you received me as an angel of God, as Christ Jesus Himself.” In other words, you really did a wonderful job in receiving me. Verse 15 reads, “Where then is that sense of blessing you had?” Remember Galatians is written to a church that’s lost their joy because they got their focus off of Jesus and grace. Then he says “For I bear you witness, that if possible, you would have plucked out your eyes and given them to me.”
Many people think that Paul picked up some kind of fungus in his eyes going through Pamphylia, which was a low country region. There was such a disease at that time. It was a disease called Ophthalmia, and it was disease of the eye. Perhaps somehow it affected his eyesight. He said to the Galatians, “You would have given me your eyes if you could have.” That’s where the idea comes that Paul had a very significant problem with his eyesight.
Well, he’s giving Tertius, who’s actually transcribing the letter, the courtesy of greeting the believers in Rome. How would we ever know about Tertius if Paul hadn’t brought him in this picture? That’s what I’m trying to show you. You know, again, it’s just a list of people. But if you think about it, these were the relationships that God had given to Paul, and each one of them played an intricate role in his life. Now they come forward as the staff, so to speak, and send their greetings. You begin to realize how God can use any of us at any time we’re willing to say “yes” to Him.
Well next, in verse 23, he mentions Gaius. “Gaius, host to me and to the whole church, greets you.” Gaius was probably the same Gaius that’s mentioned by Paul in 1 Corinthians 1:14. It might be a little better for you if you watch these and follow along. Paul says in verse 14, “I thank God that I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius.” He was actually baptized by Paul. You ask, “Why is that significant?” Well, because Paul didn’t baptize many people. Did you know there are many people who say that water baptism is absolutely necessary for your salvation. I know some folks, very close to me and my family, who believe that. Now, if that’s the case, then Jesus dying on the cross, shedding His blood, raising from the dead, all of those things are important in the gospel but to have the true gospel you’ve got to add in baptism by water. Is that correct? Is that’s what they’re saying.
Well let me just read a verse to you and see if this will go home and worry you a little bit. I hope it does if you believe that other stuff. 1 Corinthians 1:17 says, “For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel.” Now wait a minute. I thought baptism was a part of the gospel. You see, it’s amazing to me. Some people make a cookbook out of the scriptures. He says, “but to preach the gospel, not in cleverness of speech, that the cross of Christ should not be made void.”
So Gaius has the distinction of being one of the few people who Paul himself ever baptized. Paul didn’t do that much. Paul was out to preach the gospel. Somebody else took care of the baptizing. This is a significant point I just thought I’d throw in, because that’s one of the verses that is very difficult to deal with when you believe that water baptism could save anybody. You know, some people even go back and refer to Noah and the ark and say those who were “in the water” were saved. No. Those in the water drowned. Those in the ark were the ones who were saved. No water touched them because the ark is our Lord Jesus Christ and that’s what salvation is all about.
Next he mentions Erastus and Quartus. Look in Romans 16:23 again. “Gaius, host to me and to the whole church, greets you. Erastus, the city treasurer greets you, and Quartus, the brother.” Now the city treasurer was a very high important office in that time. It was of great importance. This man Erastus is usually identified with the Erastus who was with Paul at Ephesus and who was sent by Paul along with Timothy into Macedonia while the Apostle remained in Asia. Look over at Acts 19:22. We find him mentioned there in that group that was sent over into Macedonia. “And having sent into Macedonia two of those who ministered to him, Timothy and Erastus, he himself stayed in Asia for a while.”
Erastus was still at Corinth when Paul wrote his last letter, which tells us that this must have been his usual place to stay. 2 Timothy 4:20 says, “Erastus remained at Corinth, but Trophimus I left sick at Miletus.” Again, you wouldn’t know him if Paul did not give him the courtesy to send his greetings there to the church at Rome. So often you think Paul is the only one doing anything and you forget he had a staff built around him. You don’t hear from them very often. That’s why you need to look at the last verses of every book because he brings these people to life.
All we know of Quartus is that he was called the brother. This could mean that he was the brother of Erastus or that he was just a brother in Christ.
Then Paul says again in verse 24 what we heard in verse 20. He says in verse 24, “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.” That’s the benediction. Hey, folks, we’re getting right down now to the very close of the letter. Every time I see that phrase, “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you,” it just quickens me as to the whole message of the book of Romans. We’re no longer under law, he says over in chapter 6, but we’re under grace. What does it mean to be under grace? Well, we’re no longer under the condemning nor controlling power of the law. We’re now under grace. Christ has paid the penalty and has also settled the power of sin. He’s put His Spirit within our life. When we choose to live Romans 12:1-2 we appropriate the grace of God and the grace of God means: I can’t; God never said I could. He can; He always said He would. Christ lives in me. The Apostle Paul, as his team steps forward to send their greetings, makes that benediction. “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.”
You know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ also can be seen in 2 Corinthians 8:9. It says, “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sake He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich.” Now that’s grace. That’s grace carried out. That’s grace in operation, what Christ did for you and me that we do not deserve. That’s our Lord Jesus Christ. From His highest heaven He never ceases to pour out upon His own the inexhaustible riches of grace.
We might sing, “Hallelujah, What a Savior.” We’re coming down now to the final few words of the book of Romans. He has sent greetings to those he knows. He’s come back and warned them of deception. He’s warned them and also encouraged them that Satan who’s behind it all will one day be crushed under our feet by the God of peace. Then he comes back to another list and his companions come forward. They send their greetings. Then Paul wishes a benediction on them. “May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.”
Have you ever been on a journey and you’ve been walking a long way up a pathor a hill and you turn at the end of it and look back and realize how far you’ve come?
Well, think how far we’ve come in the book of Romans. What have you learned from the book of Romans?
In chapters 1, 2, and 3, what do we have? He speaks about sin. Do you know anybody anywhere around you who believes they can earn their way into heaven? Well, have them go back and read chapters 1-3. They’re going to find out that no man can earn his way to heaven. Every man is born a sinner. The depravity of man is all over chapters 1, 2, and 3. From 3:20 all the way through chapter 5, Paul talks about justification by faith and faith alone. If you happen to know anybody who thinks it’s any other way, take them back and show them. Even Abraham had to be justified by his faith. He goes back and shows you this is the way it’s always been. This is the covenant God made with Abraham.
Then we come to chapters 6-8, and we find the sanctifying experience of the Holy Spirit of God living in us. We find out that in 6:6 that we have a body that’s called the body of sin. No wonder I have all these problems, man. My body is still tempted by the things of this world. That’s why daily I have to say “yes” to Christ; and I can only say “yes” to Christ because of His grace. In chapter 7 he shows you what it’s like when you don’t say “yes” to Christ and you try to do it in your own strength. Oh the desperation of chapter 7. Then you come into chapter 8 and realize the role of the Holy Spirit of God. Then you find the security we have in Christ. We find some family words like foreknowledge and predestination are brought in to help us understand we didn’t find Jesus. Jesus found us.
In chapters 9-11 you have the sovereignty of God and salvation. Oh, these are chapters that I just hope someday I can begin to understand. I still have a lot of wrestling in my mind of what’s going on there. But the overwhelming thing is the last few words that Paul mentions in chapter 11 when he says, “Oh the wisdom and the majesty of God.” He says that all things are of Him and through Him and to Him. Amen.
Then he starts chapter 12 and says, “I beseech you therefore, brethren.” All of this the grace of God is extended. He tells them the relationship we have to God daily. There’s no other way. Why present my body? It’s a potentially sinful body and the mind is the culprit. Therefore, I have to have my mind renewed everyday by the word of God. What’s that going to do? First of all, it’ll make me a servant to others and to Christ. It gives me the servant heart. It’s the Holy Spirit working in me. In the middle of chapter 12 it gives me a sensitive heart to love without hypocrisy. In chapter 13 it gives me a submissive heart because I’m even willing to submit to governmental authorities. In chapters 14-15, we begin to realize how we treat our weaker brother and realize that God’s love in us gives us a sensitivity even to them. Then in the last part of chapter 15 we come to the epilogue down to where we are in chapter 16.
Paul says in his benediction, “May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.” You think you don’t need grace? Let’s challenge you a little bit. Wake up tomorrow and say, “Today, Lord, I’m going to live like Jesus.” You do that. I promise you. You don’t think you need His grace, you say that in the morning. Say, “God, I don’t need that preacher. I don’t believe anything he’s talking about. I can do this. Good
grief! Anybody can do this. I’m going to love my brother today.” Well, call me about two o’clock tomorrow when God puts a brother in your life you didn’t know existed. You’re going to say, “Oh, God, I can’t. Oh, God.” You’re going to begin to understand what grace really is. It’s not only that which you don’t deserve but it is the transforming power of God in your life giving you the ability to love those people who you didn’t know were out there. You start realizing why he said, “May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you”. You can’t live apart from it, folks. You are desperate for it and so am I.
In the circumstances that you’re facing, it’s God’s grace that gets you through. It’s God’s grace that gives you that love for the people who you have to deal with. May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.
Well, I hope you’ve enjoyed this journey as much as I have. We’re not quite through it yet but we can see it. It’s kind of like somebody said, “It’s not the end of the world but we can see it from here.” It’s not the end of the book yet but we can see it from here. We’re standing right on the edge of it. I just hope you’ll go back through it and say, “God, I want to be one of those mentioned some day. I want to be one who can be counted on Your team. I want to be a part of Your work.” The only way to do that is to bow down and say, “Here am I. Send me.” God will take any vessel and use you beyond your wildest imagination. He’s waiting on us. He’s waiting on us. I love you.