I’ve been reading the book of Acts recently… trying to wrap my head around what it must have been like for the apostles in the short time after Jesus had left them to do the great commission.
I love chapter 16 where Paul and Silas have apparently aggravated enough people to the point that they are beat up and thrown in prison. What I love is that they didn’t let their brutal situation dissuade them from honoring God. There they are; battered and bruised, locked in chains, and yet they chose to break out into song… worshiping God! (v. 25). I could stop right there and be challenged to make better choices when I’m having a bad day, but the next line is what I’m dwelling on today:
…and the other prisoners were listening.
As Christ-followers, we have to be constantly aware of who is listening to us, who is watching us, who is basing their opinion of Christians on how we react in the tough times. When we chose to actively honor God in all situations, people will be drawn to Him… That’s our gig: point people to God, and watch what happens:
Suddenly, there was a massive earthquake, and the prison was shaken to its foundations. All the doors immediately flew open, and the chains of every prisoner fell off! The jailer woke up to see the prison doors wide open. He assumed the prisoners had escaped, so he drew his sword to kill himself. But Paul shouted to him, “Stop! Don’t kill yourself! We are all here!”
The jailer called for lights and ran to the dungeon and fell down trembling before Paul and Silas. Then he brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”
They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved, along with everyone in your household.” And they shared the word of the Lord with him and with all who lived in his household. Even at that hour of the night, the jailer cared for them and washed their wounds. Then he and everyone in his household were immediately baptized. He brought them into his house and set a meal before them, and he and his entire household rejoiced because they all believed in God. (Acts 16:26-34)
Who is eavesdropping on you and what are you telling them?