It can be called many things… behind the scenes, a season of preparation, the middle, a time of waiting, or a time of transition. If you haven’t walked through a season like this yet, you will—and if you have, I can promise you will walk through many more in the years to come.
God is all about seasons, all about growth, and all about showing us how much bigger He is than our best laid out plans. Some transitions are slow, in fact, most are. However, the ‘Saul to Paul’ transition was not at all slow, and in my bones I believe that for many reading this, this is not the case for their season of life either. We are in a season of SUDDENLY, and if you are feeling a tug to something new, welcome to the conversion season!
3 As he was approaching Damascus on this mission, a light from heaven suddenly shone down around him. 4 He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul! Saul! Why are you persecuting me?”
5 “Who are you, lord?” Saul asked.
And the voice replied, “I am Jesus, the one you are persecuting! 6 Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.”
7 The men with Saul stood speechless, for they heard the sound of someone’s voice but saw no one! 8 Saul picked himself up off the ground, but when he opened his eyes he was blind. So his companions led him by the hand to Damascus. 9 He remained there blind for three days and did not eat or drink.
Can you even imagine? Here goes Saul, murderer of the Lord’s followers on his way to add more Jewish casualties to his count, and BAM! God calls him by name, and changes his life.
The first thing I felt in my heart is, for those of you praying for friends and relatives and have all but lost hope because they seem so far away from God, let this do more than encourage you, let this stir you up! It doesn’t get more opposite than Saul and salvation; yet, God knew his name and called him out from where he was! Keep praying, God is not intimidated by their sin!
In calling Saul, God knew what He was getting into. He knew the history of bloodshed, hatred, laws, mindsets, and learned behavior that Saul lived by. I believe this is why God made him blind. This conversion was not a ‘next step’ for Saul. He wasn’t walking to Damascus as a missionary, but God told him to start a church. This conversion would require a completely new allegiance, way of life, job, friend group, and motives. Saul needed a blind transition.
After this encounter with God, Saul knew that he could no longer be who he had been, but he had no clue as to who he was to become. Maybe you can relate to this. You are doing what you have always done, but it isn’t the same. You don’t know exactly what the next step is, but you know you can’t keep doing what you’re doing because you were made for more. The blind transition is about trust. It’s about surrender. It’s about leaving your comfort zone because it is riskier to risk not taking the risk… and missing your destiny.
While blind, Saul had to be humble enough to be led by the hand to the next destination, and he had the only thing he needed: the voice of God. In those three days of blindness, Saul saw God’s faithfulness, His power, and His kindness. He surrendered to all that God was doing because his life depended on it.
What if we hung onto every word God said as if our life depended on it? God has infinitely more for us than we often allow ourselves to believe. I doubt in those days of blindness Saul thought it possible that he would very soon be preaching the gospel with signs and wonders and that he would go on to write most of the New Testament. All he knew was that he couldn’t be who he once was, nor did he have the desire to be anymore.
If you are in transition, my prayers are with you! The blind season is hard, especially if you are not yet sure of what is to come, but be encouraged! God had to blind Saul, so that he would gain His vision.