“Each Sabbath found Paul at the synagogue, trying to convince the Jews and Greeks alike. And after Silas and Timothy came down from Macedonia, Paul spent all his time preaching the word. He testified to the Jews that Jesus was the Messiah. But when they opposed and insulted him, Paul shook the dust from his clothes and said, ‘Your blood is upon your own heads—I am innocent. From now on I will go preach to the Gentiles.’


Then he left and went to the home of Titius Justus, a Gentile who worshiped God and lived next door to the synagogue. Crispus, the leader of the synagogue, and everyone in his household believed in the Lord. Many others in Corinth also heard Paul, became believers, and were baptized. One night the Lord spoke to Paul in a vision and told him, ‘Don’t be afraid! Speak out! Don’t be silent! For I am with you, and no one will attack and harm you, for many people in this city belong to me.’ So Paul stayed there for the next year and a half, teaching the word of God.” Acts 18:4-11 (NLT)



Paul arrived in Corinth and continued to make tents to support his ministry. Paul made his way to the synagogue each week to tell the people about Jesus. When Silas and Timothy arrived, they enabled Paul to devote his time to preaching and teaching instead of making tents. He was speaking the truth to the people in Corinth. This synagogue was the religious meeting place, but as Paul told the people about Jesus, they didn’t want to listen. So Paul walked out of the meeting place to the house next door. While one would usually travel farther if they were facing opposition, Paul’s heart for the people of Corinth caused him to keep preaching. As he faced opposition, he may have wondered if he should just move on to the next city. God’s Word came to Paul to encourage, reassure, and silence his fears. The Lord didn’t deliver a message to not be afraid if a person wasn’t afraid. The threats and accusations against Paul must have weighed heavy on his heart, but one word from God gave Paul staying power. When he might have contemplated leaving, God’s direction enabled him to stay. He held on to that truth in midst of opposition, threats, and persecution. 


In our lives, one word from the Lord can give us the confidence and commitment to face trying situations. When we face opposition or difficult situations, our automatic response can be to leave. However, leaving isn’t always the answer. God strategically places us at certain places in time to accomplish His purpose. God has you at your place of employment, living in your neighborhood, and attending your church for such a time as this. While it might not be easy, remember that God’s Word will sustain you through the most difficult circumstances. Spending time listening and reading His Word will help you tune in your internal antenna to God’s truth He is speaking into your life. God’s Word strengthened Paul, and it can strengthen you as well. Today, God may simply be reminding you to not fear for He is with you. Don’t leave where God has asked you to stay. His presence and promise will sustain you, and wherever His presence resides is where you want to be. 

Scripture quotations marked (NLT) are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

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About Hona Amer

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