“ Scattered”

Acts 8:4-8

We have been watching a progression.  Anger and jealousy led to murder and persecution.  The persecution scattered people around Judah and Samaria.  People who have been going to the Temple to pray and worship and then gather in groups on the porch to discuss the “issue of the day” are now “preaching the word wherever they went.”  In terms of spiritual growth, it seems there is a faith step happening.  Talking about the sermon with family and friends is very different than sharing with a neighbor or stranger who is not familiar with our faith and may speak a different faith language.  The early believers are learning to share their faith. 

         Luke gives the example of Phillip going to a city in Samaria.  Remember that the Samaritans are not necessarily considered the good guys, and certainly suspect spiritually.  Phillip is sharing in an uncomfortable situation but the people listen.  It reminds me of the woman at the well.  She was a Samaritan.  Phillip preaches and as he speaks, demons shriek, healings occur and people are amazed.  That was a genuine tent meeting.

         When we share we are not usually given miracles to show the truth of our words but perhaps the miracle is that we gather the courage to share.  Putting into words that which is holy in our hearts is challenging.  Let us spend some time pondering before God if he would place someone in our path today that we can share hope with.  It does not necessarily mean that they become Christians, though they might, but the exercise of sharing is important to our growth.  Ponder now if there is something about your faith that you could share.  Maybe it is only a smile with a stranger.  Maybe it is  an appreciation for nature or a song.  But maybe it is sharing about an experience of God blessing you.   Lord, open a window of opportunity to share about your blessings in my life with someone who needs encouragement today.

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