Read Acts 9:10-22
So Ananias went and found Saul. He laid his hands on him and said, “Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on the road, has sent me so that you might regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.” Instantly something like scales fell from Saul’s eyes, and he regained his sight. Then he got up and was baptized. Afterward he ate some food and regained his strength. Saul stayed with the believers in Damascus for a few days. And immediately he began preaching about Jesus in the synagogues, saying, “He is indeed the Son of God!” (Acts 9:17-20 NLT)
I remember as a kid having some kind of Bible comic book that illustrated this and other stories about Paul set in a modern context. I was fascinated by it for some reason, so I would read the comic over and over. I’m still fascinated by this story. This morning I am particularly drawn to how immediately Paul’s ministry began. His sight was restored (or you might argue that for the first time he could see clearly), he ate a hearty meal and then got to work proclaiming Jesus in the synagogues. Immediately. He didn’t go through 101 class or any kind of extensive training first. Jesus was alive and Paul met him, so he went and told his story… immediately. I imagine that as things went on, Paul learned from those with a few more miles under their feet and he got some training that was helpful as his mission expanded. That being said, because he now knew Jesus, he was immediately qualified to tell others. Paul began it by preaching in the familiar setting of the synagogues — a place where he was likely already known. For you and me maybe our place of proclamation or engagement with others is different. My guess is that most of us are not called to stand on the table in the break room at work and begin preaching. How then do we begin proclaiming Jesus in the places we most often find ourselves? How do we tell our story and his? What does it look like? What does it sound like? There was an urgency for Paul, it seems. Is there a similar urgency in us? How do we begin… immediately?