A dad noticed his son watching intently from the dugout while his teammates struggled on the field. Down 18-0, and counting, in the top half of the first inning, the dad came behind his son and whispered through the fence, “I’ll bet you feel discouraged.” Without hesitating, the hopeful son replied to his dad, “No need to worry, we haven’t even had a chance to bat yet.”. What a positive outlook to a seemingly hopeless situation.
As a fan, I always enjoy a comeback story from a resilient team. Even more, I love to see an individual who seeks to make the most of a situation and is hopeful in the face of trial. Paul exhibited this through his patient endurance of trials as described in Acts.
Specifically, Acts 26 provides an example where Paul even used his necessary defense to pivot the conversation from his personal defense to make it a defense of the Gospel. It was his courage and focus on the Master that motivated him to maintain a positive outlook in a seemingly hopeless situation.
Courageously he recounted his personal experience but made much of the call of God and the power of the resurrection. He clearly communicated the Gospel’s call of repentance and faith. This testimony and tribute to King Jesus serve as an example for you and me.
We may not be down 18-0 in a baseball game, but life may have thrown us curve balls that lead us to a weary place of entrapment or hopelessness. No matter the situation, we must maintain a focus on Jesus, the Hope of Glory, and a commitment to make the most of every circumstance to point others to Him.
How can you use opportunities within everyday conversations to seize a moment to proclaim the hope of the Gospel even in circumstances that may seem hopeless?
The New American Commentary: Acts © Copyright 1992 Broadman & Holman Publishers.
About Acts: An Introduction and Commentary Copyright 1980 I. Howard Marshall.
About A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the Acts of the Apostles, Volume 2 Copyright © 1998 T & T Clark. All rights reserved
About The Pillar New Testament Commentary: The Acts of the Apostles Copyright 2009 David Peterson.
Acts: New Testament, Volume 6 Copyright 2014 Esther Chung-Kim, Todd R. Hains, Timothy George, Scott M. Manetsch and InterVarsity Christian Fellowship/USA.