Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Changing Hearts

Sometimes in the midst of all the arguing, anger and despair, we forget that no matter how hard we threaten, cajole, or rant, we cannot sway other’s opinions about God and his creation.  We must pray that hearts be changed.   Hearts that are open to listening to God, open to respecting our world and those who dwell in it are focusing on what is good.  But if we become mired in the mud and give up hope, we are not helping anyone and in a sense we are giving up on the goodness God put in people.

We must remember that we are ALL God’s creation, even those who don’t believe in Him or His part in their lives. 

Now Saul, still breathing murderous threats against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest and asked him for letters to the synagogues in Damascus that if he should find any men or women who belonged to the Way, he might bring them back to Jerusalem in chains.  On his journey as he was nearing Damascus, a light from the sky suddenly flashed around him. He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him “Saul, Saul why are your persecuting me?” He said, “Who are you sir?” The reply came, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. Now get up and go into the city and you will be told what you must do.”  (Acts 9:1-6)   

And so we must be instruments of God’s Good News. We cannot wash our hands of them, keep screaming or make threats but act at Ananias  did when the Lord told him to go to Saul, “Go for this man is a chosen instrument of mine to carry my name before Gentiles, kings and Israelites and I will show him what he will have to suffer for my name.”  (Acts 9:15-16) 

We too have to be confident that God will use us to help others see and know His love for all people. We cannot despair, and give up joy.  We are to proclaim God’s marvelous Words in our speech, our actions and the way we treat people and most of all we must pray for everyone to have the same conversion Saul did. “He stayed some days with the disciples in Damascus and he began at once to proclaim Jesus in the synagogues that he is the Son of God.  All who heard him were astounded and said, “Is this not the man who in Jerusalem ravaged those who call upon his name and came here expressly to take them back in chains to the chief priests?  But Saul grew all the stronger and confounded the Jews who lived in Damascus, proving that this is the Messiah.”  (Acts 9:19-22)

Live in joy and prayer, our God who is all powerful, loves us!

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