Luke 1:1-4, 4:14-21
How St. Paul must have treasured those words which Jesus spoke in the synagogue! “He has sent Me to bring glad tidings.” The “glad tidings”–the Good News of Jesus Christ–flooded Paul’s spirit to overflowing, and no amount of suffering and misfortune could deter him from sharing it with others. It’s an incredible thing, the story of Paul’s immense struggle to spread the glad tidings. And the most incredible part of it is, that a man who suffered so much could feel and express so much joy! In Second Corinthians, Paul recalls some of the things that had happened to him: five times he received forty lashes, less one; three times he was beaten with rods; once he was stoned (that is, people threw rocks at him); three times he was shipwrecked. “I traveled continually,” Paul says, “endangered by floods, robbers, my own people, the Gentiles; imperiled in the city, in the desert, at sea, by false brothers; enduring labor, hardship, many sleepless nights; in hunger…
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