Apr 29, 2022
How do we respond to resistance?
Hi, I'm Mike Henry Sr with Follower of One, thanks for joining me again today on the Follower of One Podcast.
Today, I want to take a look at Acts 14:3. "So they remained for a long time speaking boldly for the Lord who bore witness to the word of his grace granting signs and wonders to be done by their hands." Again that's Acts 14:3 from the English Standard Version.
Paul and Barnabas have just entered this town called OD conium or region. They entered there together and they went to the Jewish synagogue, and they spoke and many people believed, many of the Jews and the Greeks also believed in them. But the unbelievers stirred up one another and poisoned their minds against the brothers it says in Verse 2.
What did Paul and Barnabas do? Well, they didn't leave. They stayed. They remained for a long time. They went about speaking boldly for the Lord and the Lord bore witness to his word by signs and wonders. Now, many people talk about the charismatic movement and there are many people who believe that the signs and wonders are still present today. And I believe they are. I'm not sure exactly how, or how God does that, or why he shows up, or when he does what he does. That's not what this post is about today. Our conversation today is about the phrase "so they remained for a long time."
Sometimes I think as Christ followers, we pull out of work too quickly. We're anxious to get out of our workplace and go back to our suburb and be around our fellow Christians and hanging out in our fellow churches and do things with the people who believe the same things that we believe. We're quick to leave the area where we meet resistance. We're not quick to stay. These men remain for a long time. Yes. They spoke boldly for the Lord. Yes, the Lord bore witness to his word. And yes, signs and wonders were done by their hands. But even if those things hadn't been done, I believe Paul and Barnabas were called to remain. I believe we're called to remain. And sometimes I believe we can invest more of our energy into our relationships in our workplaces, because that's what God has called us to do.
Those people are more our neighbors today than many of the people that we live with in many situations, at least in mine. I don't know many of my neighbors very well. I live on a large lot, you know, somewhat rural part of town. And so all my neighbors are people I work with. They're people I interact with. I interact with people more on zoom these days since the pandemic, than I've done any other format. I know a few of our neighbors. Our job is to interact with whoever we interact with, to remain for a long time to be invested in their lives. We may get an opportunity to speak. We may only get an opportunity to serve, but I believe God calls us to be invested in the lives of the people that he brings around us.
My challenge for us today is let's not be so quick to leave our workplace. Let's not be so quick to jump out of our work relationships so that we can be around the people who believe the same way we do. Let's be more invested in the relationships where we are, wherever we are in this moment is something ordained by God. He's allowed it to happen. The relationships that you can build with the people that you interact with every day, this begins with your family. Those are your primary relationships. But also your work relationships, you spend a lot more of your time in relationship with the people that you work with then you do. Then the people that you go to church with,
but the point is we work with a group of people 40 hours a week, or 50 hours a week, or whatever that is. And we're only with people at church, a few hours a week, two or three or four or less. Let's invest in the relationships where the most time is already being spent. Remain for a long time, ask God to put you to work in the lives of the people that you interact with. Watch him do that, watch him move in their lives because of the way that you are a blessing to them.
Thank you for being a Marketplace Minister and thank you for making a difference with your faith. What you do because you followed Jesus matters. Join us at https://community.followerofone.org, and let's get better at paying attention to the people around us, to remaining where we are and to making a difference because of our faith.
Thanks very much.