Stages of Christian Experience

            I’m still thinking about a short blog my daughter sent me. It is based on Paul and Silas’ visit to Philippi (Acts 16).  They were faithfully serving God but were arrested, beaten and chained in prison (v.16-24).  God watched it happen and didn’t stop it.  They remained in prison with no explanation as to why (v.25).  Despite this, they prayed and praised God (v.25).  Then, in His timing, God delivered them from prison (v.26).  Immediately they continued to faithfully serve Him (v.27-34). 

            It seems we are in one of 3 stages: 1) afflicted while God remains silent 2) suffering the consequences He didn’t prevent, 3) delivered from circumstances to serve until stage 1 comes again.  Which stage are you in? In all of them we are to stay faithful. When suffering gets worse and He doesn’t free us, that’s when we raise our hearts in song & prayer (v.25).  Worship is still the best antidote to whatever trials we face.  Worship is still the best antidote to whatever trials we face.  In life we can’t control our circumstances but we can control our responses.

The other prisoners were watching.  Others watch us as we go through painful, unfair situations in life.  What do they see in you?

Above all, remember – for every stage 1 and 2, there will always be a stage 3.  We will be delivered from it, if not in this life, than the next.  So be encouraged and keep worshipping!  (February 4, 2019  Kurnool, India)

Acts 16:25 About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them.

Jerry Schmoyer

Christian Training Organization 

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