1 THESSALONIANS 2:2
“but after we had already suffered and been mistreated in Philippi, as you know, we had the boldness in our God to speak to you the gospel of God amid much opposition.”
It’s easy to talk to people who like you and welcome you, but it is more difficult to do that with people whom you know don’t like you. Paul had faced this issue many times. Here he reminds the Thessalonians what had happened to him in Philippi.
Do you need a reminder? Read Acts 16:22-24. Beaten, jailed and put in stocks. That’s a pretty good sign that they weren’t liked. But they ended up singing in prison and watching the jailer and his family come to Christ. How cool is that? In the midst of pain and suffering there was joy.
Teaching our children to persevere under hard times is so important. When others ridicule or make fun of them, they have to remember to pray for them. When God opens the door to share the gospel, they need to be ready. You see, our response to those who seek to harm us can either drive the further from the gospel or draw them to it.
When the jailer saw Paul’s response, he was drawn to Jesus. He wanted to know how to get saved. That still happens today. They expect us to act like the world and get mad or angry. When we don’t, they want to know why. Teach your children this truth and make sure they are ready to respond.
Are you? Are you ready in season and out of season to present the truth? Don’t miss the opportunities. When your enemies attack, ask God how to share with them. Remember you are representing Jesus, not yourself. It is through His power you can share with them His love.
Lord, give me the peace to share when attacked. Give me the words You would have me share. I trust You to protect me in the process