WEDNESDAY, MARCH 9
19 They stoned Paul and dragged him out of town, thinking he was dead. 20 But as the believers gathered around him, he got up and went back into the town. The next day he left with Barnabas for Derbe. 21 After preaching the Good News in Derbe and making many disciples, Paul and Barnabas returned to Lystra, Iconium, and Antioch of Pisidia.
22 They encouraged them to continue in the faith, reminding them that we must suffer many hardships to enter the Kingdom of God.
Acts 14:19B-22 (NLT)
GETTING OVER HURDLES: STAY FAITHFUL IN HARDSHIPS
Julie Ackerman writes: The buttercups in our backyard were unusually bright and beautiful due to the generous amount of spring rain God sent our way. I wanted to take some pictures of them before they faded, but I had trouble getting close enough because they were growing in a very soggy wetland. One sunny afternoon, I pulled on a pair of boots and trudged through briers and brambles toward buttercup bog. Before I got any pictures, I got muddy feet, multiple scratches, and numerous bug bites. But seeing the buttercups made my temporary discomfort worthwhile.
Much of life is about “getting through” the trials and troubles that are inevitable in our sinful world. One of these trials is persecution. The disciples certainly found this to be true. They knew the good things that Jesus has ready for those who follow Him, but they met harsh resistance when they tried to tell others. (Julie Ackerman, Our Daily Bread)
Every Christian will face the hurdles of suffering and even persecution as a result of following Jesus. How can you benefit from studying the persecution of Christians throughout history and even around the world today?
Thank God for the Christians who suffered so that you could hear about Jesus. Ask God to give you the courage to endure any suffering or persecution you are facing.