Thursday, September 29, 2011

"Change is Possible"

Acts 9:11 "So the Lord said to Ananias, "Arise and go to the street called Straight, and inquire at the house of Judas for one called Saul of Tarsus, for behold, he is praying."

Ananias knew about this man Saul...
heard all about the terrible things he 
had done to believers 
in Jerusalem.   A
nd the LORD knew that Ananias was going to 
have some reservations about Saul.  That's why He told him 
"Behold, he is praying."   The LORD wants Ananias to understand that Saul has changed...he's different for now he prays to Me."  Don't you love how the LORD points to the fact that Saul is now praying to Him as proof that he is a believer, proof that it is safe to go.  "Behold, he is
praying to me now. (NLT)"  

But Ananias has taken his eyes off the LORD and puts them on the man, Saul, and Ananias 
 gone from 
"Yes, LORD" to "But LORD" ~  
"but LORD, ...he is authorized by  
leading priests 
to arrest 
every believer 
in Damascus."   
Whenever we say "but" it means we are in opposition to what has just been said.  And we usually say it right before we give our explanation/excuse for why we can't do something.  "But LORD, I can't go there, I might be arrested!   God isn't only working in Saul's heart...He's working in Ananias 
heart too.

"But the LORD said, "Go and do what I say.  For Saul is my chosen instrument to take my message to the Gentiles and to kings, as well as to the people of Israel."  Acts 9:15

God is so gracious to Ananias...He didn't have to explain what he was doing...The LORD could have just stopped at "Go and do what I say."   But He doesn't stop there...God shares His plans for Saul, to help Ananias to see more him what he needs to enable him to get up and get going.  Since God did this for Ananias, he will do the same for us as well.   He will always give us what we need ~ to do what He has called us to do.

"So Ananias went and found Saul.  He laid his hands on him and said, "Brother Saul, the LORD Jesus, who appeared to you on the road, has sent me so that you may get your sight back and be filled with the Holy Spirit."  Acts 9:17

Doesn't the LORD work in unexpected ways...getting Saul's attention, what a dramatic change.  Who would have thought that Saul would get saved...well, not Ananias...and I'm sure we wouldn't have thought so either.  But at the same time God is working on Saul, he's working on Ananias' heart (a devoted Christian).  

This is a great reminder that no one is beyond the reach of God and none of us have arrived...we all need the changing power of Jesus in our lives, but we need to permit Him to change us...transform us.  Had Saul been unwilling...he would have continued as he was, a non-believer fighting against God.  And Ananias...we would have never heard of him.

But for those who are willing to yield to His will, listen to His Word, and follow His way, He begins to change that believer and accomplish remarkable things in their life.  He also begins to do wonderful things through that life.


No comments:

Post a Comment