Posted by: bshelley | July 9, 2008

Seeking God’s Heart- by Bryan Shelley

Audio Version: seeking-gods-heart-acts-22_16

Today’s Verse: Acts 22:16 ‘Now why do you delay? Get up and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on His name.’ NASB

The apostle Paul often recounted his amazing conversion story to others. He had to. He was widely known as a persecutor of the Way, the Christians. They all wanted to know what in the world could have happened to him that would have caused such a complete reversal in this Jewish Pharisee’s zealotry against Jesus’ followers. He eagerly told the story of being confronted by the risen Christ. His sudden physical blindness created a space in which he could be taught that he was indeed spiritually blind as well. There was not a doubt in his mind that he was doing God’s will before this when he supervised Stephen’s stoning and went house to house arresting Jesus’ disciples. There are a lot of religious zealots out there in the world today. They too are convinced that their god wants them to persecute the errant infidels. We need to pray for them. Like the Christians of Paul’s time, we are reluctant to approach them with the truth for fear of reprisal and physical harm, yet we are called to take the good news to all. We may not be able to address them face to face, but we can certainly pray. When was the last time you prayed for our enemies? We see in Paul’s life what can happen if a misdirected zealot meets Jesus. We can pray that their lives can be spared long enough to hear and receive the truth. We can pray that their designs to harm others will be frustrated and cause them to come to a teachable moment on their Damascus road. Maybe that person is you. Maybe you have not persecuted others so much as you have done seemingly everything in anger to destroy your own life and all those around you have been hurt. Jesus is still in the life healing business. “Now why do you delay? Get up and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on His name.” Maybe you just find your life with a large spiritual hole in it. You have tried to fill it with everything imaginable without success. Nothing seems to satisfy that deep hunger. Jesus does. Again, “Now why do you delay? Get up and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on His name.”

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