And he said, “Who are You, Lord?” Then the Lord said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. It is hard for you to kick against the goads.” So he, trembling and astonished, said, “Lord, what do You want me to do?” Then the Lord said to him, “Arise and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.” (Acts 9:5-6)
When Saul the Persecutor heard a voice from heaven, he asked who it was speaking. The answer from heaven was clear: I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. Those words came with a flood of meaning to Saul. In that instant, he knew that Jesus was in fact alive, risen from the dead – because a dead man doesn’t speak from heaven! Saul also knew that when he persecuted the followers of Jesus, he actually persecuted Jesus who spoke from heaven.
Most everyone has questions they would like to ask God. Several years ago a survey asked people to choose three questions they would most like to ask God. The top five responses were:
– Will there ever be lasting world peace?
– How can I be a better person?
– What does the future hold for my family and me?
– Will there ever be a cure for all diseases?
– Why is there suffering in the world?
It is strange that people would want to ask God these questions when, in some way, they are already answered in the Bible. But they really aren’t the most important questions for us to ask. Saul asked two rightquestions, questions that I believe each one of us should ask.
Question: Who are You, Lord? We must ask this question with a humble heart and ask it to God. Jesus showed us exactly who God is, and He can answer this question. Paul spent the rest of his life wanting to know more completely the answer to this question (Philippians 3:10). You can ask this question every day: “Lord, I want to know You more. Show me who You are, as revealed in Jesus, explained in Your word.”
Question: What do You want me to do? This is a question from a surrendered heart. Not enough people dare to really ask God this question, but when we ask it, we must ask it with submission and determined obedience.
When Saul asked this question, Jesus only told him what to do right at that moment – the next thing to do. This is often the character of God’s direction in our lives. He directs us one step at a time instead of laying out at once the details of His grand plan.
Saul’s question was personal. He asked the question with a “me”: “Lord, what do You want me to do?” We often are quite interested in what God wants others to do. But the surrendered heart asks, “Lord, what do You want me to do?”
Can you personally ask God these two important questions?