In this verse, Jesus refers to Paul as His “chosen instrument.” First of all, Paul was chosen. He did not simply have a change of mind about Christianity while traveling to Damascus. It was a divine intervention. This divine intervention was part of a plan… a plan developed in the mind of God and carried out with perfect precision.
That plan is to spread God’s word throughout the whole earth, and God is still working out that plan today. As Christians, we are all “chosen instruments”, and called by God. Your coming to a relationship with Jesus Christ was no accident. He has chosen you, and He has chosen you for a particular purpose.
For Paul, that purpose was to “… carry my name before the Gentiles and their kings and before the people of Israel.” While our purpose may not be as dramatic and impacting as Paul’s, we can be sure that it will have some similar themes. First of all, we are in some fashion to be involved in “carrying His name” before those who do not believe. As physicians we are often in the unique position of interacting with patients who may be experiencing great emotional and physical need. While we must be careful not to “push” Jesus where He is not wanted, we should recognize opportunities to gently share His love and concern for them in the midst of a difficult time. One simple and practical way of doing that is to ask the patient if you could pray for them. Studies show that in stressful times, most patients welcome prayer.
Recognizing that we are God’s instrument being used by Him to carry out His plan should help us to see the events of our day as not accidental or coincidental, but rather planned. We are given a great privilege to participate in that plan and should remain prepared and vigilant, always seeking His will throughout the day.
Prayer: Lord thank you for the opportunity to participate in your great plan of salvation in the small encounters of my day. Help me to recognize when you are working in someone’s life and give me the courage and words I need to speak.