Bible Devotions

Getting our Attention

 

Read Acts 9.

 

God has ways of getting our attention.  With Saul of Tarsus, God literally knocked Saul off his horse and blinded him. Sometimes God allows sickness or other physical ailments to get us to slow down.  Maybe we have been doing too much and need a reminder to do only what the Lord wills. Other times God might use a loss of a job to get our attention. 

 

The question is are we paying attention?  Are we reading the signs God’s placed in our lives? 

 

The Lord doesn’t just get our attention and leave us wondering.  He is specific with us.  Look at how He interacts with Saul in Acts 9:6 “Arise and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.”  I find that very comforting.  Imagine you were just struck blind.  I’m sure our mind would be racing thinking all sorts of things: how will I provide for my family, how can I care for myself, who will help me, how do I get things done, etc.   Though we may not be afflicted in same way as Saul, the Lord still wants us to listen for what we must do and be confident He will lead us. 

 

During the days Saul had no sight, I’m sure he spent plenty of time praying.  He was probably reassessing his life wondering what he did wrong to deserve this affliction. Isn’t that just like us?  When something goes “wrong” we think we must have done something to cause it.  I’m sure that’s the case sometimes like when we have to reap the consequences for our sin.  There are plenty of other situations that are not caused by us but rather used for God to develop His image in us.  Maybe we need to learn patience or perseverance or faith.  Circumstances can help us develop godly character traits.

 

In Acts 9:9 it says Saul went without food or drink for the entire three days.  The Bible doesn’t tell us why.  We could speculate many reasons.  Perhaps he meant his denial of food as a fast to help increase he chances of his prayers being heard.  Maybe he was so consumed with his predicament he just couldn’t eat.  Here’s a stretch, maybe he was fearful that someone who try to poison him in his weakened state.  After all he was persecuting the Christians in that day.  We don’t know why he didn’t eat or drink in all that time.  But we do know God was using those days to radically change Saul’s life. 

 

Is God trying to get your attention?  Listen.  He will tell you what you must do.  Isaiah 26:3 says of God: “You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You.” Also in Isaiah 30:15 “In quietness and confidence shall be your strength.” It’s time for us to follow the advice of Psalm 46:10:  “Be still and know I am God.”   Lastly, we’ll end with Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.”

 

Lord thank you that all things work together for good for those who love you and are called according to your purposes.  Help us recognize when you are trying to get our attention.  Enable us to listen for your clear direction.  Give us the courage to obey.  In Jesus’ name Amen.

  

© Elizabeth Marks, author of ThinkOnIt Devotions and has a heart for encouraging others with God’s Word.  For more devotions, bible studies and a recommended book store, visit http://www.ThinkOnItDevotions.com today.

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Parallels

parallel-roads-along-residential-area-ph121_017.jpg  Two roads before us.  

The Bible tells us everything exists for God to bring glory to Him.  Genesis 1:31 NKJV says “Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good.”  All creation speaks of God and points back to Him.  Everything we see physically has an underlying purpose to guide people back to God. 

There are two vital principles to both the physical and the spiritual life.  Both sustaining and learning efforts must be present for an enjoyable, satisfying life to exist, whether physical or spiritual. 

For example, we must sustain our self physically with food, water and sleep, else we perish.  What happens when we don’t eat?  We get hungry, weak, and vulnerable to attack, as well as we might get sick and/or die.  Well, the same thing happens in our spiritual life when we don’t take in God’s Word.

How do we know we have a spiritual self?  When we become Christians by trusting Jesus Christ to save us, we are born again with a new spiritual dimension.  The old is gone and new has come, we are new creations in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17).

 Just as the physical body needs food, water, and sleep to survive, the spiritual body requires the same elements.  Food is Jesus Christ who is the bread of life (John 6:35).  God’s Word tells us about Jesus.  Luke 4:4 NKJV says “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.”  Jesus Christ in Holy Spirit form is the living water springing up within us to everlasting life (John 7:10 and John 7:38).  Sleep or rather rest comes when we keep our mind steadfast on God because we trust Him (Isaiah 26:3 and Philippians 4:8-9).  

We also need to keep learning else we injure our self and others and/or perish.  Just like a young child must learn not to touch a boiling pot on the stove, else they get burned, we as children of God must learn not to touch or become involved with anything that would cause us or others to sin.   We also have to learn to walk by the Spirit.  We learn to speak the truth in love, just as we learn to love others as our self.  

How do we learn?  The same way we do physically.  In school we learn from our teacher.  In Spirit, we learn from the Holy Spirit as well as from Bible teachers and pastors.  We have role models to follow (apostles and saints from the Bible).  In school we might have a study group, and in Spirit we learn from other believers through fellowship.   

Both our physical and spiritual life depend on effort on our part to sustain and continue learning.   Are you neglecting your spiritual life?  There are grave consequences in doing so.  May this short devotion be just what you need to spark a renewed effort to sustaining and learning in your spiritual life.    

Lord help us have spiritual eyes to see You in everything.  May the world around us always keep pointing us back to You.  Help us continue to sustain our relationship with You.  Let us not grow weary in doing what You’ve called us to do.  In Jesus’ name Amen.    

© Elizabeth Marks, author of ThinkOnIt Devotions and has a heart for encouraging others with God’s Word.  For more articles, devotions and book reviews, visit http://www.ThinkOnItDevotions.com today.

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