Daily God Walk for Today
Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. - Matthew 5:10-11
A true test of faith and love is how we are affected by adversity and how we handle persecution. Many believers have endured persecution beyond human ability because they were immersed in the love of god and their faith released God’s strength in them.
Paul penned these words to the church at Corinth, “We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed” (2 Corinthians 4:8-9). When Paul spoke of these things he knew his subject well because in another place he lists his persecutions; stoned and left for dead, thrown to the wild beasts, five times he was beaten with rods and more (2 Corinthians 11).
The amazing thing about what Paul endured was his attitude, not only about his persecutions, but his attitude about his persecutors as well. In 1 Corinthians he writes, “When we are cursed, we bless; when we are persecuted, we endure it; when we are slandered, we answer kindly” (4:12-13). That is hard love.
Our love of God is tested by persecution. Have you been persecuted lately? Have others spoken ill of you for no apparent reason? Have you been misjudged, accused, ridiculed, or just ignored? All of these actions against us are tests of our faith and love. I encourage you to look inside of yourself and see how you handle adversity.
If our hope is in him and his kingdom then our response to persecutions and persecutors will be love without restraint.
Prayer: Lord, I’m not quite there yet. Persecutions and persecutors are still a test of my faith. I ask you for the grace to love as you would love. In Jesus name, amen.
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