5/28 Acts 18:9-10

9 And the Lord said to Paul one night in a vision, "Do not be afraid, but go on speaking and do not be silent, 10 for I am with you, and no one will attack you to harm you, for I have many in this city who are my people."

Paul has faced some serious persecution and is only halfway into his second missionary journey. He has been stoned, caned, imprisoned, and chased out of city after city, sometimes fleeing for his life. Now he is in Corinth, one of the most decadent cities in the world. Half the population were slaves. The Temple of Diana boasted having one thousand prostitutes. Perhaps Paul was experiencing a bit of post-traumatic stress. He would have to be some kind of superman not to have some fears that the past persecutions might be repeated.

The solution for his condition was a word from God. God is sovereign over all the details of life. If He tells us not to be afraid, then there is nothing to fear. Paul knew he should never fear (Deuteronomy 31:8), yet he needed the reminder from the Lord. The Lord promised that no one would attack or harm him. Then the Lord added another incentive to continue. He had many people in that city. He promised Paul that his work would be fruitful, and it was. He stayed for a year and a half before those in opposition to the gospel made an attempt to prosecute him. When they came before the proconsul, the opposition was punished.

We can find ourselves backing away from the call of God upon our lives because of opposition or bad experiences. That is when we need a word from God. We can know what the Scriptures say, but we need to have the Lord speak to our hearts so that we are assured that we can go on. God knows how we feel and the weaknesses of our minds and bodies. He is able to intervene when we can't find the strength to continue (1 Corinthians 10:13).

Remember: When you are at the end of your rope and don't see how you can continue to do what God has called you to do, wait on the Lord. Listen for His still, small voice (1 Kings 19:12). Confess your weaknesses, and ask for a word from heaven.