I've always been a big fan of John's writings and the gospels, of course. But honestly Paul's never been one of my favorites. I think the biggest thing I got out of this is a huge RESPECT for the apostle Paul. Seriously, the man is a freakin' superhero!
I've read all of this many times before, but it's been a while since I read it all in one shot like that. I was blown away by his boldness. He was a man so committed to following God's lead in his life that he really didn't care who he upset or what the impact on his own safety and life would be. Obedience to God and reaching the lost were his singular focus. He didn't care if he ticked off a king or hurt another apostle's feelings. He was a man on a mission!
Here's the result. Men like Paul may not have a ton of BFFs, may not ever pastor a mega-church, may not live a long life, but the fruit of their faithfulness is evident for generations (or centuries) after they're gone. Paul's my new hero! I hope I can be at least half the disciple he was. I'm often criticized for my boldness, but I'm a wuss compared to him. It's time for me to crank up the boldness dial to 11!