19Then some Jews came from Antioch and Iconium and won the crowd over. They stoned Paul and dragged him outside the city, thinking he was dead. 20But after the disciples had gathered around him, he got up and went back into the city. The next day he and Barnabas left for Derbe. 21They preached the good news in that city and won a large number of disciples.
This passage has always amazed me. Even though it is a short passage, it speaks of the spiritual resolve that we all must have. The fact that Paul was facing opposition in the past several cities he and Barnabas had been to, but refused to stop what he had set out to, is inspiring. I can’t imagine being on the run from an angry group of people, ministering to another group of people that did not want to listen, just to get stone by two groups of people that normally would not agree on anything. Talk about a bad day! Despite the downward spiral in his ministry, Paul refused to give up. He kept going! After all of that, he won a huge number of people in the next city he went to. That is awesome! Then to top that off, he went back to the city of the people that came and stoned him. Wow!
We live in a fast paced, crazy world. We are always facing adversity and struggle. God promised us that He would “never leave us or forsake us”. We have to live like we believe that, no matter what is going on in our lives. If we are living the life that God called us to there will be things attacking us all the time. We need to stop focusing on those things and remember what Paul said at the end of Chapter 14.
“We must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God,”
Even when you are beat down, get back up again, dust yourself off, and walk back into the fight. God is with you, and that won’t change. Stop managing life, and live it!