As they stoned him, Stephen prayed, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” He fell to his knees, shouting, “Lord, don’t charge them with this sin!” And with that, he died.
Acts 7:59-60 (NLT Study Bible Text)
I have always been inspired by the life of Stephen, this first martyr. He had been chosen among seven other people to help the apostles taking the responsibility of a food program and practical organization of the new community. He was a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit, full of God’s Grace and power, performing amazing miracles and signs among the people. But Pharisees came against him but couldn’t stand against the wisdom and the Spirit with which Stephen spoke. So, they arrested him with false accusations. For his defense, he preached a great sermon, but his audience rejected him and decided to kill him. As they stoned Stephen, he faithfully followed Jesus’s example of praying for those who were against him.
From a human point of view, it was surely unfair and a terrible tragedy. But God used this injustice against Stephen to plant a seed in Saul’s life that would later on grow into an amazing harvest. Stephen’s friends and brethren were devastated, but God turned this tragedy to a triumph. God takes what the enemy means for evil and turns it around for our good and His Glory. Saul would later on become Paul, one of the most influential people in the Bible.
Always throughout history, the enemy has tried to stop the people chosen by God. But the good news is, when the enemy comes against us, God is still working for us behind the scenes. We have to do our part, to pray, to forgive and trust God during this testing times. It’s difficult to lose a friend or family member. It’s not easy to battle sickness like depression or others. It’s challenging to face broken relationships. But, as we surrender those things to healing and restoration into our lives with God, your tragedies can turn into triumphs. With God, all things are possible. If God is with you, who can be against you. With God, you will overcome and fulfill your destiny that will glorify Him.
Prayer: God, I don’t understand everything but I put my trust and hope in you. I know that you are working behind the scenes as my enemies are trying to destroy me. But you will use my tragedy as a seed for my victory. I don’t see yet the whole picture but I know that everything is possible with you expecting great things in my life.
Quote: As I trust God, He is going to turn my tragedies to victory !
Song: https://youtu.be/awkO61T6i0k Raise A Hallelujah (LIVE) – Jonathan and Melissa Helser – VICTORY