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I’m currently reading “The Gift of Prophecy” by Debbie Kitterman. Excellent book as it is encouraging, refreshing, eye-opening and needed by us all.

“We often fail, however, to step into what God is calling us to do because we do not recognize His voice.” (from page 46)

*This one sentence brought to mind a post written several years ago which I have edited to share again today. It’s based on the story of Saul and his experience on the road to Damascus …

Saul (later to be called Paul) is traveling to Damascus. He is blinded by a Light and has an encounter with a Voice, and does not yet realize it is is the Lord Himself. He is told to go to the city, where someone would tell him what to do. He waits three days for further instruction. Meanwhile, Ananias, a follower of Jesus, has his own encounter.

The Lord spoke to him [Ananias] in a vision, calling “Ananias!”

“Yes, Lord!” he replied.

The Lord then tells Ananias where to go and what to do. Ananias offers the Lord this rebuttal …

“But Lord,” exclaimed Ananias, “I’ve heard many people talk about the terrible things this man has done to the believers in Jerusalem! And he is authorized by the leading priests to arrest everyone who calls upon your name” (Acts 9:13-14, NLT).

And the Lord responds with this:

“Go! for Saul is my chosen instrument to take my message to the Gentiles and kings, as well as to the people of Israel” (verse 15).

You can read the entire encounter found in Acts 9:3-20. But here is what I gleaned as I read:

  1. No one is out of God’s reach. God can, and often will, speak to those that do not yet know Him.
  2. W can recognize the voice of God. Ananias recognized the voice of the Lord.
  3. God will do what He desires with our reputations.  Saul’s reputation proceeded him. So will ours.
  4. 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 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 and determination is to change lives.

One life. One light. One voice.
And history was forever changed.
May we learn to recognize His voice.


Today I am joining … Porch Stories and Let’s Have Coffee and Woman to Woman and Recharge Wednesday .