Yesterday we considered God appearing as a gentle nudge, how he arrives gently and naturally on the scene. This appearance is comforting to me.
Sometimes, however, he has to explode onto the scene to get my attention. This is what he did with Paul:
But Saul, still breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest 2 and asked him for letters to the synagogues at Damascus, so that if he found any belonging to the Way, men or women, he might bring them bound to Jerusalem. 3 Now as he went on his way, he approached Damascus, and suddenly a light from heaven shone around him.4 And falling to the ground he heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?” 5 And he said, “Who are you, Lord?” And he said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. 6 But rise and enter the city, and you will be told what you are to do.” 7 The men who were traveling with him stood speechless, hearing the voice but seeing no one. 8 Saul rose from the ground, and although his eyes were opened, he saw nothing. So they led him by the hand and brought him into Damascus. 9 And for three days he was without sight, and neither ate nor drank. (Acts 9:1-9, ESV)
Do you find it interesting that Paul knew immediately who was speaking to him? He knew who was showing up in that blinding light. It was the Lord. Instant recognition and obedience. Paul’s companions were there as witnesses–a good thing to have when you’re going through a major life changing experience.
God burst into Paul’s life. Was that the only way he could have gotten Paul’s attention? Would Paul have ignored the gentle nudges? Can you relate? Have there been times when you stubbornly ignored God’s more gentler attempts to get your attention? Did it take a more earth shaking, life changing, event to break through your reluctance, your arrogance?
I know what it’s like…perhaps that why I prefer the nudges.
But either way, it’s good to know God knows how to get our attention.
PRAYER: God, thank you for breaking into my life, my awareness, my mess just the way you need to in order to get my attention. Nudge me or blind me, but don’t let me get away from what I need to hear today. My ears, my eyes, and my heart is open. Amen.