Monday, August 28, 2023
The early disciples were grieved by the martyrdom of Stephen and saddened by the vicious persecution launched against them in Jerusalem. Still, they didn't allow their grief or sadness to derail their mission. Jesus had called them to reach people throughout the world.  They had largely stalled in fulfilling this mission. Persecution intending to stamp out their movement drove them out of Jerusalem. Rather than backing down under opposition or backing off in their mission, they carried the message wherever they went. They used these hardships and their persecution as an opportunity to spread Jesus' message throughout the world.
We need to learn from their example. Rather than seeing hardships and suffering as a sign of God's disapproval, they used them as the opportunity to take the Good News of Jesus to the world's lost people.  Shouldn't we? Trials, suffering, persecution, and difficulties are not necessarily because we are outside of God's will but actually living for God in a world hostile to faith. When we are faithful, God uses us to do more than we can ask or imagine because His power, the Holy Spirit, is at work in us. 
Father, thank you for the example of these brave and committed early disciples. Stir my heart to feel Your burden for the lost and use every opportunity I have to share Jesus. I want my heart to resonate with Jesus' passion for reaching the lost and broken of my world. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.
Together in Christ is a daily devotional that focuses on what Scripture teaches about godly living in relationships.
'Together in Christ' is written by Phil Ware.
Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
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