Right in the middle of Romans 16, we meet Paul’s “dear friend” Epenetus. His distinction is that he was the first convert to Christ in the province of Asia. He is only mentioned here in the whole of the NT. We don’t know anything about him as to his position, his family or his vocation. We don’t know how he came to Christ. What we do know is that he has made the life changing decision to follow Christ, and with it, came this shocking revelation: there were no churches or no Bibles for him to read, and perhaps no other believer to walk alongside him on his “road to Emmaus.” Only Jesus.
If this were you, would it be enough?
You may have encountered an Epenetus. They have found Christ, and although they lived a morally upstanding life, it was not a Christ-like life. Would you be willing to walk along the “Emmaus” road with them? Are you willing to pray with them and begin to disciple them one step at a time? Would you be willing to be a listener as they seek answers to their questions? Would you be willing to encourage them to love others who still are like they were?
Beloved, remember this; they may have to re-learn what you already know such as how to think and how to read and understand the Bible. They may have had to take a stand that runs counter to the belief system they have left behind. It has left scars of their former existence that you have not had. They know the high price of freedom from sin. To them, their new life is exciting beyond anything they could imagine.
Are you willing to place yourself in their shoes and then choose to walk the road with them?
If you can say yes to both of those questions then you are ready to take the next step of commitment to them. It may be a one time encounter or it may mean months of interacting with them for just one day or one day a week at a time. It may mean you offer your financial, emotional, and/or spiritual blessings. Jesus reminded us that we must “count the cost.”
Are you ready to take this next step?
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