4 As they traveled from town to town, they delivered the decisions reached by the apostles and elders in Jerusalem for the people to obey. 5 So the churches were strengthened in the faith and grew daily in numbers.
This chapter of Acts is crammed full of the ministry of the apostles, and particularly of Paul and Silas. They were guided by the Holy Spirit, who guided them on the right timing for entering a new region for ministry. In Macedonia, in the city of Thyatira, they met Lydia, who became a believer and one who hosted them at her house. Paul and Silas met opposition when Paul healed a servant girl. They were flogged and thrown in prison.
During the night a violent earthquake caused the prison doors to be opened and their chains to be released. The jailer was upset that his prisoners could have escaped, but Paul and Silas preached the gospel to him. He was filled with joy to believe in God, and he and his household were baptized.
These were amazing days of God working powerfully in their midst despite the hardships they encountered. We have allowed ourselves to be content with far less guidance of the Holy Spirit. We do not see daily growth in the church, either spiritually or numerically. We pray to be strengthened in faith, in order that we too may do great things for the Lord.
Gracious God, we say we believe in Jesus, but we don’t act as though we believe. There is nothing in us distinctive from anyone who does not profess faith. Have we made a difference so that others may come to faith? Forgive our lethargy and for taking you too much for granted. Fill us with your Spirit of power and truth, that we may do great things for you. Amen.