1 Timothy 1:12-17
“12 I am grateful to Christ Jesus our Lord, who has strengthened me, because he judged me faithful and appointed me to his service, 13 even though I was formerly a blasphemer, a persecutor, and a man of violence. But I received mercy because I had acted ignorantly in unbelief, 14 and the grace of our Lord overflowed for me with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. 15 The saying is sure and worthy of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the foremost. 16 But for that very reason I received mercy, so that in me, as the foremost, Jesus Christ might display the utmost patience, making me an example to those who would come to believe in him for eternal life. 17 To the King of the ages, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen. 1″ NRSV
When you read the backstories of many of the saints and notables of the faith you discover a large number of them tell a similar story to one to the one Paul tells here. They began as rebellious and/or promiscuous youth or young adults and found Jesus in the midst of their transgressions. Over time, their “worldliness” gave them keen insights to the faith that connected well to the hearts and minds of countless people over the centuries. Our faith would be far more impoverished than it is if not for people like Thomas Merton, Augustine, and Francis who drew heavily from the well of their misguided youths to leave legacies of wisdom and spiritual insight that have guided millions to a closer walk with God.
The good news here is that no one falls too far from the reach of God’s grace. No matter what we have done, God’s amazing grace can still save every repentant “wretch.” Well, there is one exception to that, the one who chooses not to be saved.
Be a blessing to someone today!