“So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also.”
It is hard to imagine any mortal being more surrendered to Christ and His will than Saul of Tarsus, later known as the apostle Paul. As soon as this persecutor of Christians comprehended who Christ was and yielded to Him, the words that flowed from his lips were, “Lord, what wilt thou have me to do” (Acts 9:6)? The rest of his life was spent following the will of the Crucified One. This commitment took Paul to eager listeners and hostile environments, to major cities and lonely prison cells. There were those who wanted to deify him and others who sought to destroy him. One thing was certain about Paul: he was ready to do whatever God would lead him to do. His words testify to this readiness, “I am ready to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also.” It was not a boastful remark, simply a matter of fact.
What about us? Are we ready? To be ready does not necessarily mean that we are thoroughly prepared. It more so means that we are willing and available to do whatever God wants us to do. It is a willingness to obey and follow God’s will. Are you ready? One might ask, “But how can I know if I am willing to do God’s will when I am not certain of that will?” The answer is simple. God would have us to be available and willing to do His will, whatever it is. The word ready can mean to be predisposed, or inclined in advance. To be ready means that we have already surrendered and are willing to do whatever God shows us to do.
Why would we not be ready to do God’s will? In Matthew 26:41, Jesus said to the disciples, “the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Our flesh gets in our way. That is one more reason why we must deny ourselves and seek to be fully surrendered to Christ. God can be trusted. He is good, and whatever He wants from us will be best for us. Our hearts should be ready to follow Him wherever that might lead. I’m sure there are many who one day plan to be ready or hope to get ready, but never seem to come to the place of surrender and availability.
The need is great now, and the opportunities of the present will not wait. Why not decide now that whatever His will might be, you are willing to do it? Like the great missionary, we want to be able to sincerely say to our Lord, “I am ready.”