Friday, November 30, 2007

Blessed by Persecution

We may not always feel it's so, but the Bible says we are blessed when we're being insulted, slurred, and persecuted. Matthew 5:11-12 says, "Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven ... " The Lord's perspective on persecution is vastly different from ours. He considers it a positive thing if we suffer in His name. We can rejoice and be glad because ...

It proves our faith. The only way we can know the capacity and quality of our faith is by testing it. When we persevere through a trial, we begin to understand that we can remain steadfast and obedient in the midst of the challenge. We also learn the extent of God's strength to support us through these trials.

It purifies our life. Persecution takes our eyes away from meaningless things and places them on the Lord. We are driven to the Lord when we suffer. As we grow closer to Him, He'll bring to our awareness wrong attitudes and actions for which we are to repent. Persecution is a powerful tool for cleansing.

It prepares us for greater service. Suffering breaks our pride and our selfishness and our self reliance, all attitudes that hinder and get in the way of our usefulness for the Lord. Pride falls when we realize we are incapable of living the Christian life on our own, especially when we've been hurt or insulted.

A life of ease and pleasure isn't necessarily a sign of blessing. So, let's not "be surprised at the fiery ordeal ... as though some strange thing were happening" (1Peter 4:12). If persecution strengthens our faith, purifies our hearts, and equips us for greater service, then we should thank the Lord for the way He will use it in our lives.


Just a short little blog this morning as I have to take Pepper to the vet for his rabies vaccination and I wanted to get my blog out of the way before leaving to take care of that. No news of any kind to write about this morning. I got up early to get my hair washed and get my blog written. I was sleeping pretty good when the alarm went off and was sorely tested to force myself to get out of bed. I hope to get our Christmas lights up this afternoon. Tomorrow's the first of December and I figure the decorations can be out for the entire month. Most of the neighbors already have all their lights up. Well, I better go get into my clothes and get ready to take Pepper. I may publish another post tomorrow but see you Monday for sure ...

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