Devotional

April 16, 2022


| Apr 10, 2022

April 16, 2022

Encounter: Paul

Scripture: Acts 9:1-19 NLT

Meanwhile, Saul was uttering threats with every breath and was eager to kill the Lord’s followers. So he went to the high priest. He requested letters addressed to the synagogues in Damascus, asking for their cooperation in the arrest of any followers of the Way he found there. He wanted to bring them—both men and women—back to Jerusalem in chains. As he was approaching Damascus on this mission, a light from heaven suddenly shone down around him. He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul! Saul! Why are you persecuting me?”

“Who are you, lord?” Saul asked. And the voice replied, “I am Jesus, the one you are persecuting! Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.” The men with Saul stood speechless, for they heard the sound of someone’s voice but saw no one! Saul picked himself up off the ground, but when he opened his eyes he was blind. So his companions led him by the hand to Damascus. He remained there blind for three days and did not eat or drink. Now there was a believer in Damascus named Ananias. The Lord spoke to him in a vision, calling, “Ananias!” “

Yes, Lord!” he replied. The Lord said, “Go over to Straight Street, to the house of Judas. When you get there, ask for a man from Tarsus named Saul. He is praying to me right now. I have shown him a vision of a man named Ananias coming in and laying hands on him so he can see again.”

“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.” But the Lord said, “Go, for Saul is my chosen instrument to take my message to the Gentiles and to kings, as well as to the people of Israel. And I will show him how much he must suffer for my name’s sake.” 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 might regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.” Instantly something like scales fell from Saul’s eyes, and he regained his sight. Then he got up and was baptized. Afterward he ate some food and regained his strength.

Prayer:

Lord,

Paul was passionate in his persecution of you and everyone who followed you. Until … until he encountered you personally—your blinding light and glory surrounding him, and your voice piercing the heavenly light with his name, the name associated with imprisonment and murders of the faithful. “Saul! Saul!” This encounter changed Saul’s life, his name, and the lives of millions who’ve read his letters in the New Testament. Sometimes when I think you can’t use me, that I am not a worthy ambassador, I remember this encounter on the road to Damascus. God, may I be an instrument to take your message forward. It is in your power, not mine, the Good News will be shared, but I pray you will use my life to help others see your glory. In Jesus’ name,

Amen.


Read all of 40 Days of Prayer at easter.crossings.church.