A little encouragement

by Dennis
(Lexington, KY)

Not a pastor and have a great deal of respect for those that are. Just wanted to share a thought with the hopes of encouraging some pastors that are going through a hard time. In Acts 13 and 14, it tells of Paul's journeys through three cities... Antioch, Iconium, and Lystra. I still remember the first time I read this story. I was expecting to read about how Paul's preaching would be well recieved. Instead he ran into a lot frustration. In Antioch, it was going pretty well until some people stirred up the people and eventually expelled Paul. So they went to Iconium. In Iconium, they had people ready to stone them... but they escaped. In Lystra, the people followed them from Iconium and Antioch and this time they did stone him to the point where he barely survived. At this point... I remember thinking how frustrated Paul must have been.

However... after continuing on to Derbe, we come to Acts 14:21-22 "21 They preached the gospel in that city and won a large number of disciples. Then they returned to Lystra, Iconium and Antioch, 22 strengthening the disciples and encouraging them to remain true to the faith. 'We must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God,' they said"

You never know how God is going to use your difficult circumstance. In Paul's case... it was the trials he went through that ultimately reached the people of Antioch, Iconium, and Lystra.

Hang in there. Praying for ya.

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