Paul arrested in a riot in Jerusalem (Acts 21:31-36) - Artist unknown
(from the book Treasures of the Bible: The Early Church)
TODAY'S SPECIAL: Acts 22:1-21
TO CHEW ON: " 'For you will be His witness to all men of what you have seen and heard.' " Acts 22:15
I never tire of hearing stories of how God draws people to Himself and works in their lives. These tales—as original and varied as the people who tell them—range from stories of quiet pilgrimages to dramatic visions that turn life around in an instant. Paul's story was of the latter variety.
At the time it happened, his experience was reinforced by Ananias coming to him. Ananias was an entirely different sort of person. Paul describes him here as "… a devout man according to the law, having a good testimony with all the Jews who dwelt there…" (Acts 22:12).
We know that sage Ananias had his own side of the story (Acts 9:10-18). His word to Saul/Paul was: God has chosen you. Now go and tell your story (my paraphrase of Acts 22:14-15).
Now, following his arrest by the Jerusalem mob, Paul gets to tell his story to the crowd that has just rioted and nearly taken his life (Acts 21:31-36). Of course this experience itself is a new installment in Paul's story.
Ananias' assignment to Paul is ours as well. Let's stay alert to God working in our lives so we recognize the continuing installments of our own "seen and heard" with God. Then let's retell the fresh chapters as conversations and situations, riots and debates open up along those lines.
PRAYER: Dear God, thank You for working uniquely in each life. Help me to recognize Your presence and action in my life and give me the courage to tell others. Amen.
Unless otherwise noted all Scripture quotations are taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.