In this chapter Paul continues his travels. He left Athens and went onto Corinth. He preached in the synagogues, to the Jews and the Greeks. Many of them opposed his teachings. The glares, the curt words, the subtle body language that rejects the good news. Many of us will be tempted to give up with much less!
Paul‘s way of responding was to shake the dust from his clothes and move on. “I’m going to the Gentiles” he said. We can learn from this. To not take it to heart, leave it to the Lord, and move on.
V9 One night the Lord spoke to Paul in a vision: “Do not be afraid; keep on speaking, do not be silent. V10 For I am with you and no one is going to attack and harm you, because I have many people in this city.” God asks Paul to continue his work of preaching the Gospel, no tot give up, despite the persecution. Paul is called to faithful persistence.
We often hope to hear God’s words to us, his encouragement to persistence, or even his assurance of his presence with us, but we don’t stop long enough to listen. Many of us need to put some time aside from our busy lives simply to listen. Time to find a space void of distractions, a room at home, the backyard or a nearby park, and to be still in His presence. You may want to light a candle, and meditate on some scripture (Psalms is a good place to start).
It was through a vision that the Lord revealed himself to Paul. He encouraged him to not be fearful and to continue to speak to people. Be open to how God might reveal himself to you today. Take time to wait on him. Continue to seek him, and faithful persistence in what he calls you to.