“Morning by morning, O Lord, you hear my voice”
Troubles and Trials but also Triumph
(Please read 2 Corinthians 11:21-29)
When he wrote about being persecuted for being a Christian, Paul wrote from experience. The fact that he persevered in preaching Christ even after being harassed, threatened and mistreated is evidence of his deep faith and commitment to the Lord. There is much about his life for us to try to emulate.
It was Paul’s sincerity and dedication that led him to teach about Jesus in many places. He spoke boldly in synagogues, at a riverside prayer meeting, in many homes, in jail, on a barracks stairway, before the Sanhedrin council, before governors and a king, aboard ships, and on a hill in Athens.
He was a gregarious man, widely acquainted with devoted friends. When there was a delay or break of some kind in planned activities, Paul was likely to stroll away and look for new people to meet and talk to about Jesus. This characteristic added to his effectiveness and provided a good example for today’s Christians.
Being friendly, though, did not mean that Paul timidly accepted all insults and abuse without speaking up. For example, when the magistrates at Philippi tried to cover up their abusive guilt by hustling him out town, he demanded that they escort him and Silas out, and even stopped on the way to visit Christians at Lydia’s house. And he spoke fearlessly to the Roman political bosses about their shortcomings and need for the Lord.
What a man! Paul was obviously more concerned with spiritual matters than creature comforts, for he devoutly believed what he wrote in Romans 14:17: “For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.”