Strengthened through faith

Acts 15:36 – 16:5, 1 Peter 5:1-14

Everyone faces a time when the best made plans fall apart. Projects seem too daunting, resources don’t add up, or perhaps we simply cannot rise to the occasion. Barnabas and Paul planned to revisit those churches included in their first missionary journey. But prior to leaving they had a stark disagreement. At issue was John Mark’s abandoning them early on. When the going got tough, young John Mark retreated to his home in Jerusalem. Yet this was not the end for Mark.

As Mark grew in years and experience, he also grew in faith. At the point of our reading today, Barnabas is ready to offer him another chance. Barnabas took Mark along to Cyprus where he continued his ministry. Later, Mark would also serve extensively with Peter (1 Peter 5:13). Even Paul would come to rely upon Mark as a servant of the gospel (Col. 4:10-11).

Mark serves as an example for Christians today. Even in our failures, God strengthens the faithful through the power of the Holy Spirit. And so we continue in our calling, persevering in faith, ministering to our neighbor, and proclaiming the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Prayer: Mighty God, strengthen my weaknesses and give me confidence to boldly share the truth of your Son Jesus Christ. Amen.

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