I read something interesting the other day. Let me catch you up a bit….
Saul (later to be called Paul) is traveling to Damascus. He is blinded by a light & has an encounter with a Voice, not realizing yet that is is the Lord Himself. He is told to go to the city, where someone would tell him what to do. He then waits three days for further instruction. Meanwhile, Ananias, a follower of Jesus, has his own encounter.
The Lord spoke to Ananias in a vision, “Ananias!”
Ananias answered, “Here I am, Lord.”
The Lord then tells Ananias where to go, what to do. Ananias offers the Lord this rebuttal….
Lord, many people have told me about this man and the terrible things he did to your holy people in Jerusalem. Now he has come here to Damascus, and the leading priests have given him the power to arrest everyone who worships you.
And the Lord responds with this:
Go! I have chosen Saul for an important work.
You can read this all for yourself in Acts 9:3-20. But here is what I gleaned this morning as I read:
- No one is out of God’s reach. God can, and often will, speak to those that do not yet know Him.
- W can recognize the voice of God. Ananias recognized the voice of the Lord.
- God will do what He desires with our reputations.Â Saul’s reputation proceeded him. So will ours.
- God’s choices may not be ours. God chose Saul in spite of the atrocities that he was doing.
Max Lucado, in his book, The Applause of Heaven writes this:
He (Saul) ended up bewildered and befuddled in a borrowed bedroom. God left him there with a few days with scales on his eyes so thick that the only direction he could look was inside himself. And he didn’t like what he saw. He saw himself for what he really was – to use his own words, the worst of sinners…..Alone in the room with his sins on his conscience and blood on his hands, he asked to be cleansed. The legalist Saul was buried, and the liberator Paul was born. He was never the same afterwards. And neither was the world.
The message is gripping. Show a man his failures without Jesus, and the result will be found in the roadside gutter. Give a man religion without reminding him of his filth, and the result will be arrogance in a three-piece suit. But get the two in the same heart – get sin to meet Savior and Savior to meet sin – and the result might be another Pharisee turned preacher who sets the world on fire.
God sees us as what we can be when He is done with the renovating of our lives. He sees the “after” not the “before”. He calls us in the midst of our mess not after we have cleaned up our lives a bit. He is a “come as you are” God whose delight & determination is to change lives.
One life. One light. One voice.
And history was forever changed.
Today I am linked with Making Your Home Sing and Inspire Me Monday and Hear It, Use It and Grace Laced Mondays and The Better Mom and The Alabaster Jar and Sharing His Beauty and Monday’s Musings and Motivation Monday and Playdates With God and The Modest Mom .