Paul, Silas, and Timothy met Lydia in the city of Philippi. They’d been in the city for several days, and when the Sabbath day arrived, they went outside the city gate to the riverside where they’d heard there was a place of prayer.
The men found a group of women gathered at the shore to pray. One of them was Lydia, “from the city of Thyatira, a seller of purple goods, who was a worshiper of God.” Though Lydia worshipped God, she did know about Jesus and his teachings. “The Lord opened her heart to pay attention to what was said by Paul.” (Acts 16:14)
Not only did Lydia believe what she heard, but she was baptized as well as the rest of her household. She then invited the men to come to her house as guests.
From this brief description of Lydia, we can learn much.
First, she was a businesswoman. She was a world traveler specializing in luxury goods. She didn’t live in Philippi but was there on business.
She was a wealthy woman. Though no mention is made of a husband, we know that she had a full household and a home large enough to accommodate extra guests.
Most importantly, we know she was a woman of prayer, a woman of faith, a woman who listened to what the missionaries taught and believed with her whole heart. Then, she passed along her faith to those around her.
Lydia defies stereotypes. She lived life to the fullest without compromising her beliefs. Through her powerful influence many came to know the Lord.
Read about Lydia: Acts 16:12-15
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