On his second missionary journey, Paul came to the city of Philippi. There, while worshiping by the river, he met and baptized Lydia. But not all in Philippi listened to Paul and he was falsely accused of “troubling the city” (Acts 16:20). Beaten and thrown into prison, Paul and Silas did not let persecution stop their preaching. Instead they sang hymns to God. An earthquake gave Paul the opportunity to tell the jailor about the hope of eternal life through Jesus. The jailor gathered his family and they heard the precious message of Jesus Christ. He and all in his household were immediately baptized–the same hour of the night!
Paul could have griped and moped about his problems. Instead, he was devoted to serving God. He had come to a city where he knew no one. On the day of worship he went where others were worshiping God. An obstacle became an opportunity to tell others about Jesus. Falsely imprisoned, he preached Christ to the keeper of the jail.
How important is Christ to us today? Are we going where we can worship with others? Can we overcome the fear of persecution, or rejection by telling others the good news of Jesus? When our soul’s salvation becomes more important than worldly favor, then we like Paul, will be ”ready in season and out of season” to spread the gospel to our world.
John K. Wills
Owingsville church of Christ