As hesitant as I am to admit, this charge from the Lord scared the living daylights out of me. After we had had time to process what the Lord had spoken to us, I couldn’t help but ponder on the instrumental role that Ananias had played in Paul's story.
Acts 9 tells us that Saul had been persecuting Jews, killing them, and doing so in the name of the Lord. However, the Lord intervened and spoke to Saul on his way to Damascus. He convicted him of the persecution of His people and, leaving him blind, instructed him to enter Damascus. There, the Lord spoke to Ananias regarding Saul. Ananias was a man that, before that day, Saul would have persecuted and killed had he had the chance. The Lord instructed Ananias to go and to lay hands on Saul, restoring his sight so that the Lord could use him to proclaim His very name to the Gentiles.
Ananias protested at first, and secretly, I’m pleased that he did! After all, Saul was responsible for the deaths of many who shared his own prerogative. Yet, Ananias was steadfast, and obedient to the charge of the Lord. Because of his obedience, another was saved — Saul, who would become Paul. Ananias took hold of what the Lord instructed him, and a movement was set into motion. The works of the Kingdom followed swiftly as Saul took on a new purpose.
With great obedience comes great reward, not just for ourselves, but for those around us. I was reminded that to walk into the proclamation the Lord had spoken over us, would mean that so many others would come to know our Savior as we did.
Is there something God has asked you to do, but you’re frozen in fear today? Maybe it’s changing your career, starting a ministry, or sacrificing part of your weekend to help someone in need.
Jesus is inviting us to take part in His great mission. We will never know how much hangs in the balance of our obedience (or lack thereof). Imagine if Ananias had responded to the Lord with “no.”
If we, as His disciples, remain obedient and ready ourselves, how much more can be done for the Kingdom? Let’s set our minds on obedience to Christ’s mission to “go and make disciples of all nations”. The benefit to our brothers and sisters in Christ, as well as the Kingdom, is endless.
Memory Verse: “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” Matthew 28:19 (NIV)
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