Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Does Jesus Christ Have Your Attention?

Many will remember the conversion account of the church-hating, Christ-persecuting man named Saul that's recorded in the N.T. book of Acts, chapter 9.

Saul was on his way to persecute Christians residing in Damascus. As he traveled, a light from heaven flashed around him and he fell to the ground. Saul heard a voice, that of Jesus, that said, among other things, "it's hard for you to kick against the pricks." Now what could this possibly mean?

This was an agricultural term. During this time, farmers would take a long, slender piece of timber and place a sharp prick on the end. This was called a goad. It was then used to urge a stubborn ox in a particular direction. Now if the ox didn't want to go in that direction, he would kick against the prick. Man, that had to be painful.

Jesus was saying, "Saul, I've been goading you for sometime now because you're going in the wrong direction. Aren't you finding it painful to stubbornly resist me?"

You see, Jesus (the Way) lovingly and graciously seeks to get our attention in order to get us headed in the right direction for life. So he gets our attention.

Author Max Lucado, in his book Traveling Light ponders, I wonder if loneliness is God's way of getting our attention."

He writes: "Suppose you borrow a friend's car. His radio doesn't work, but his CD player does. You rummage through his collection, looking for your style of music - let's say, country-western. But you find nothing. He has nothing but his style of music - let's say - classical."

"It's a long trip, and you can talk to yourself for only so long. So eventually you reach for a CD. You'd prefer some steel guitar, but you're stuck with soaring tenors. Initially it's intolerable. But eventually it's enjoyable. Your heart picks up the pattern of the kettledrums, your head rolls with the cellos."

"Now let me ask you - would you have made this discovery on your own? No! What led you to it? What caused you to hear the music you'd never heard before? Simple. You had no other choice, no other option. You had nowhere else to go. Finally, when the silence was too loud, you took a chance on a song you'd never heard."

O how God wants you to hear his music. He has a ryhtymn that will race your heart and lyrics that will stir you to tears....his music can sooth your soul. But first he has to get rid of that country-western stuff (Forgive me Nashville. Only an example.)"

What might Christ be doing in your life right now to get your attention in order to pour out His aggressive grace on you?

Pastor Van Morris


Susan Wallace said...

I am interested to know where the author has drawn from Scripture the following '"It's hard for you to kick against the pricks."....this was an agricultural term.....' I can't find any verses from Acts 9 that seem to match this. Please enlighten me!

Susan Wallace said...

Would the author please give information on the portion of Scripture from Acts 9 translated by him as "It's hard for you to kick against the pricks".....This was an agricultural term....
I cannot find any parallels with my NIV
Please point me to the verses that correspond.

Josh Eller said...

The cited passage is from the KJV...

Acts 9:5 (KJV) 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.