Scripture: Acts 23: 12-15
Observation: Some people will hate what you are doing. They will be openly against it and tell everyone else about how much they are against you. They won't rest until they destroy you.
Application: Now we may not exactly experience what Paul went through with the Jews...the whole not eating and drinking until he was dead...but we can face persecution that may try and discourage us from doing the right thing. When we speak and act on God's truth in His word, we invite people to disagree and try to discourage us from the truth. The line of truth has been blurred in today's society and even individual Christians vary so widely on what they live out as truth. It can make churches look so hypocritical when it reality we are all just sinners and all fall short of God's perfection. We are separated by sin and we all need forgiveness to cover that sin.
There are always going to be people who disagree with you. There are always going to be people who will hate what you stand for. There are always going to be people who will talk about you behind your back. There are always going to be people who will try and kill your reputation (especially when you speak the truth about a sin in their lives). What we need to remember is that we need to speak the truth in love and know what the truth is by studying and knowing God's word. We can't know what devastation the truth will cause in our lives, but we know that it is what we need to do.
Prayer: Dear Lord. Give us courage to speak the truth...even when it turns people against us...even when it causes people to want to silence us. Help us to know your word so well that we can be confident in what we say. Fix our thoughts on Heaven and that what happens on earth is so temporary. Remind us of this often so that we can be confident in sharing your truths with the people who need to hear it the most. Amen.