for some days he was with the disciples at damascus. and immediately he proclaimed Jesus in the synagogues, saying, “he is the son of God.” and all who heard him were amazed and said, “is not this the man who made havoc in jerusalem of those who called upon this name? and has he not come here for this purpose, to bring them bound before the chief priests?” but saul increased all the more in strength, and confounded the jews who lived in damascus by proving that Jesus was the Christ. [acts 9:19b-22]
people in the synagogues claimed that saul’s mission was to capture more people and bring them before the chief priests (the judicial system at the time). despite these claims, saul gained more strength, by the power of God. more than the words of others, the sovereignty of God will always prevail.
does anybody else find it odd how the people in the synagogues were amazed, yet immediately doubted? to be in awe of God’s mission through saul then turn around and claim that paul must be preaching with an ulterior motive sounds like a harsh thing to do to someone, but we often look at God in this way. God does something great in our life and then we believe it is too good to be true.
do you think God ever gives his children gifts just because? not for anything we have done, but out of love. similar to the those in the synagogue, we so easily negate the transformation that God provides in ourselves and others. we refuse the idea that God has given us and others a gift because we have not done anything. to be frank, we do not deserve the gifts God gives us, but that does not stop him from showing compassion and understanding.
take a moment to reflect on one or two gifts God has given you. give him praise for what he has done!
if you feel as though God has not given you any gifts, that may be a great place to in your conversation with God. ask him to show you where he has done a great work!
psalm 107:21- let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for mankind.
~ angela younger