I had spent almost a decade in Cilicia trying to spread the good news of Christ, but with little to show for it. I went from synagogue to synagogue telling anyone who would listen that the Messiah had come. If I found any God-fearers in the synagogues, I tried to meet with them in their homes to teach them about the way. Few received the message.
God showed mercy on me in those days during a time of great discouragement. He took me up into the third heaven, into his very presence. There I saw and heard things that cannot be expressed in words.
We would not spend long in Tarsus. My brother refused to eat with us while we were in his home. But my mother and younger siblings were affectionate. I tried to persuade her of the good news to little effect. She cared little about such things. Her body was weak, and she longed to sleep whether she be raised or not.
The few believers in Tarsus still attended the synagogue, although they always shared a meal on the first day of the week. We met with them one Sunday and encouraged their hearts, urging them to share the good news with others more and more. Then we collected supplies to move on toward southern Galatia.