This world will leave us for dead, but not the Church of Christ. That’s what literally happened to the apostle Paul in Lystra, but those recent converts to the fellowship of Jesus would not abandon him.
They stoned Paul and dragged him outside the city, thinking he was dead. But after the disciples had gathered around him, he got up and went back into the city. The next day he and Barnabas left for Derbe.Acts 14:19b-20 NIV
In the church, we find we are a part of a larger family that takes us in, warts and all. None of us perfect, each believer arrives at a different point in their journey with Christ. This presents no problem to the fellowship. The strong help the weak, we share burdens and serve out of our hurts and blessings.
Paul, the great evangelist, was in serious need. On the receiving end of a brutal stoning, he was in a horrible state. The one who brought the gospel to the people of Lystra now was being served by them. I’m sure they worked fast to tend to his wounds and give him something to drink and eat. Regaining his strength due to the help of his fellow believers, he was able to travel the next day to Derbe.
Have you ever felt you were lying by the side of the road, beat up by life? Did you find help in your church? A phone call? Text? Special meal? A timely word from Scripture?
These are reminders from God that we are never alone as part of the Body of Christ. Even those in isolation from the visible fellowship, can benefit from the prayers raised on their behalf as the persecuted, imprisoned, orphaned, sick, or widowed.
If you’ve benefited from the love of the church, ask God how you can demonstrate the same care to others in your fellowship who are hurting today. God wants to use you to show them they are not alone.
Grace and Peace