Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Second chance

After some time Paul said to Barnabas, “Let’s go back and visit each city where we previously preached the word of the Lord, to see how the new believers are doing.” Barnabas agreed and wanted to take along John Mark. But Paul disagreed strongly, since John Mark had deserted them in Pamphylia and had not continued with them in their work. Their disagreement was so sharp that they separated. Barnabas took John Mark with him and sailed for Cyprus. Paul chose Silas, and as he left, the believers entrusted him to the Lord’s gracious care. Then he traveled throughout Syria and Cilicia, strengthening the churches there. (Acts of the Apostles 15:36-41 NLT)

Have you ever gotten into such an argument that it drove a permanent wedge between you and the person on the other side? Such is the argument between Paul and Barnabus. After this argument, we believe they never saw each other again. It's sad. I've seen families, friendships, businesses, and marriages split forever due to "sharp" arguments. In these situations, there is little you can do to restore a relationship split by arguments.

I think it curious that Paul would not give John Mark a second chance. It's even more curious when you remember the major second chance given to Paul after he so cruelly persecuted Christians. God has set the standard. He has and does give each of us second chances. He usually gives even more than that. I am thankful he does. 

Dear Lord, I am so grateful you are a God of second chances. You love us so much that you will never give up on us. Help me take that principle and apply it to my relationship with others. We all deserve a second chance. Remove our hardened hearts and give us soul filled with compassion. Praise God we can count on you for the wisdom and strengthen to make it happen! You are an amazing and loving God and I worship you with all my heart! Amen!

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