"But they cried out in a loud voice, covered their ears, and rushed upon him (Stephen) together. They threw him out of the city, and began to stone him."
The mob who stones Stephen, because of his hard-to-hear yet truthful words, covered their ears to avoid hearing his testimony. Did they know, on some level, that they were wrong about him, but just couldn't admit it? He wasn't violent toward them, but yet, they murdered him. They may have thought they were acting justly in their killing of him, that it was the right thing to do. How often, throughout history, have people killed others thinking they were doing the right thing? Will we ever really learn Jesus' way of forgiveness, reconciliation, and restoration? Sadly, there has been a mad dash to kill inmates on death row before the killing drugs are no longer available. People are killing each other in the streets all the while we may think of this martyrdom of Stephen so far away from our own culture. It is not. We are murdering Stephens everyday. It's been two thousand years since Jesus taught us about life and love. What have we learned? Today, as we pray and ponder with the first martyr, Stephen, let's ask ourselves how we are still killing others, with our words, our dualistic, self righteous attitudes, and our indifference to suffering of others. Let those stones fall from our hands! Love, heidi