Acts 9:1-9 (KJV)

1 And Saul, yet breathing out threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord, went unto the high priest,
2 And desired of him letters to Damascus to the synagogues, that if he found any of this way, whether they were men or women, he might bring them bound unto Jerusalem.
3 And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven:
4 And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?
5 And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.
6 And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do.
7 And the men which journeyed with him stood speechless, hearing a voice, but seeing no man.
8 And Saul arose from the earth; and when his eyes were opened, he saw no man: but they led him by the hand, and brought him into Damascus.
9 And he was three days without sight, and neither did eat nor drink.

As any instructor will tell you, the first goal of a teacher is to get a student’s attention.

You can’t teach someone who isn’t paying attention.

Just so, the Lord sometimes uses adversity in our lives to cause us to pay attention to Him in a new way.

That’s what happened to Saul of Tarsus as he traveled to Damascus, where he intended to bring great prosecution to the Christians in that city. The scriptures tell us that Saul was “breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord” (Acts 9:1). Saul’s murderous intent nearly consumed him.

But God got Saul’s attention in a way he never expected. He sent Paul crashing to the ground with a blazing light and instructed him to enter the city and there wait for instructions. When Paul opened his eyes, he found himself blind and had to ask others to lead him by the hand into the city.

Saul definitely received a wake-up call from the Lord that day. In one unforeseen moment, God gained Saul’s undivided attention, striking him with the adversity of blindness and no doubt humiliating him in front of his traveling companions as he groveled in the dust.

But God had Saul exactly where He wanted him.

Saul felt more than ready to listen when The Lord asked, “Why are you persecuting Me?” Up to that point, Saul had no idea he was persecuting The Lord; he thought he was doing The Lord a favor by ridding the world of Christians. A period of intense adversity resulted in a complete turnaround for Saul.

Within a matter of days, he was proclaiming Jesus in the synagogues (see Acts 9:20).

If it took temporary blindness and humility to get Saul’ attention, it was certainly worth it, for through Saul-known to us as Paul the apostle- the gospel expanded and churches grew across the Roman world.

Don’t delay in responding to The Lord when He makes a move to get your attention.

Respond quickly and humbly, and listen for what He has to say to you.

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