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Be Not Afraid

Monday, May 5, 2014

Monday of the Third Week of Easter

“And Stephen, full of grace and power, did great wonders and signs among the people.” (Acts 6-8)

Serving in public office for 22 years, I became accustomed to having comments I made taken out of context. Sometimes the facts were distorted in an attempt to stir up public reaction. There were a couple of ways to deal with this. One way was to go on the attack and call out those who made the distortions. The second way was to continue to do what I knew was right, to speak straight and truthful and let those actions define what the truth really was.

In dealing with people’s emotions it was always a good plan to try and talk it through or to simply listen to their concerns.

In Acts 6 we learn about Stephen, one of the seven deacons of the early church. He was full of faith and power and did great wonders among the people. His preaching and teachings were attacked and disputed. When the learned men of the so called Synagogue of Freedom realized they could not compete with his wisdom, they brought forth persons to bear false witness against him. He was falsely accused of blasphemy against Moses and God. For his stance and speaking the truth he was put on trial before the Sanhedrin. In his defense Stephen accused the council of being stiff-necked, but he also pointed out the wonders God had performed. For his faith Stephen was ultimately stoned to death.

We may never face such danger, but the time may come when we will have to stand up for our beliefs. How will we react? As persons of faith doing God’s will, or giving in to compromise.

Dear Lord,

as the hymn says, “Be not afraid for I go before you always.”

We praise You O Lord,

the one who gives us strength in the face of struggles.

May we glorify Your name and serve You with love. Amen.

Malcolm Dirksen
Friend of Avera,

ACTS 6:8-15 • PSALM 119:23-24, 26-27, 29-30 •JOHN 6:22-29

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