Message Magazine’s Online Devotional for Thursday, April 28, 2016
Today’s Scripture Focus: Acts 9:1-9
We are focusing on sin recovery principle number one of 12: “We admit that we are powerless against sin and thus we cannot manage our lives without God’s miraculous intervention.”
Do you see the light? Have you ever been on one path in life and suddenly something so pivotal happened that it changed your life forever?
Saul’s story of God accepting U-turns is amazing. He was on a mission with one clear outcome in view—havoc. He thought he was in control. He had very specific plans laid. He had an idea of how things should be. And he marched steadily toward his goal. But God arrested that situation. This is how good God is. There are many times we think we understand life and are marching steadily toward destruction, but God will intervene and arrest our attention. He might use sickness, our feelings towards the death of a loved one, loss of employment, or a marital breakup as a catalyst to get our attention. It is often when we are most vulnerable that we become the most receptive.
Saul has a direct encounter with God, gets blinded, knocked of his (high) horse, and startled. The one who was bullheaded and completely off-course was now humbled and receptive. God introduced Himself to Saul in a way that he could understand. A powerful man like Saul needed to experience the One who could nullify his bravado. The blessing is, that as Jesus spoke to Saul, and spoke directly to his issue, Saul’s heart instantly became pliable. God can work with even the roughest of us if we just press pause and become pliable. In his wounded state, Saul was transformed to become one of the most powerful soldiers for the kingdom of God the world has ever seen.
What’s your story? Are you living in opposition to God right now? Is there some area of your life you’ve not submitted to Him? Has He been arranging your circumstances to get your attention? Have you been listening or running the opposite direction? God welcomes U-turns.
Maybe you are already a friend of God, but you still try to live as a co-pilot in your life, rather than allowing God to fully take over the controls. Yes, God does want our cooperation, but we need to just let Him fly the plane. And when we do, we are guaranteed to arrive at our destination safely.
Whether we are God’s friends or not right now, I realize it’s extremely difficult to admit we are not as powerful as we once thought. However, if Saul, a well-educated and decorated enemy of God could surrender his heart, there is no reason we can’t. Jesus is on His way. He’s coming back to take people who love Him to heaven for a thousand year vacation while He prepares to recreate our home, the earth made new. It would be a shame if what stands between us and eternal life is a simple decision to surrender under the power of His Spirit. God allows U-turns. Turn to Him today and follow Him for the rest of your life.