In Scripture, when the Jews stoned Stephen, because they didn't want to hear the truth, I am reminded in another time and place, about some of the happenings going on right in our country. In Berkeley, California, speakers have been invited to come and speak, yet there are those who promised to riot if this happens. The unrest is almost palpable, yet some are still coming to speak in spite of the threats against them. Now I know this is politically motivated, yet the anger associated against them is beyond belief, until you read something like this: "But Stephen, filled by the Holy Spirit, gazed into heaven. He saw God's glory, with Jesus standing at the right hand of God, and he said, 'Look! I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God!' Then they screamed at the top of their voices, covered their ears, and together rushed against him. They threw him out of the city and began to stone him. And the witnesses laid their robes at the feet of a young man named Saul." Acts 7:56-58 They killed Stephen that day, just for praising God, and speaking the truth to them. You see, people who know the truth will not act out that way, but those who don't want to hear the truth, not only reject it, but rail against it, when spoken, and against anyone who dares speak it. Is a time coming that we will have to take a stand, even if it brings a threat against us, even if it causes harm to us? I pray not, yet history has a way of repeating itself time and time again. But YOU, Christian, can be like Stephen, and know the truth, and God Himself will protect your heart, and protect your life for eternity, if you believe and not be swayed by threats. So don't be afraid, speak to that one the Spirit takes you to today; don't be afraid to show caring to those who might one day hate you, for you will just be doing what Christ, through His Spirit, has taught us to do,and never forget, that He is with us- always!
Lord, I ask you to give us strength and courage for the day set before us. Please be with those suffering for health sake, who may not even make it through another day. I pray for: Steve, Laura's mother, Jody, Amy, Mike Stoxx and his mother and brother, who are all suffering with cancer. I pray for Eric's daughter, for Loren, Barbara, Carolyn, Cynthia, Marlaina, Jackie Ann, Becca, Speros, Rheba, Harriet, Ada, Mike S., Denise, Olivia, Jeremiah, Gus, and Lisa. I pray for our missionaries, and my friend Tracy; for our leaders of our country, state, county, cities, and churches. I pray for those who put their lives on the line daily, and know who is their hope. I pray this in Jesus name.