Acts of the Apostles 16: 22-34
St Paul and his missionary companion Silas are flogged and beaten and thrown into prison in Philippi simply for preaching the Gospel. They spend the night praising the Lord and singing hymns despite their predicament. They find joy in their suffering.
The gaoler believes when he sees that their prisoner doors are open (the effects of a sudden earthquake) that they have escaped and decides to kill himself. St Paul prevents this by confirming their presence in the prison and then instructs him and all his household about the Lord Jesus.
Despite the opposition and the attempts to silence St Paul and his fellow missionaries, St Paul continues his ministry as he places his trust totally in God who can overcome all obstacles. St Paul and Silas take strength and direction from the words of Jesus “In the world you will have tribulation but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world”.
We too should take consolation and hope from those very words of Jesus. With God on our side we too can overcome life’s stumbling blocks and hindrances.