Jesus was persecuted. He was rejected by His own people but considered you and I more important than Himself.
Jesus was God. He did not have to endure the suffering of the cross but endured because He valued us more than Himself. Are we willing to do the same for those around us?
We are easily offended and hurt as a result of valuing ourselves more than those around us. This is a major hindrance to our spiritual growth. Are we willing to endure rejection as Jesus did for the chance to allow the Holy Spirit to touch the world through us?
Christians should love God more than “self”. It is easy to say we do but is this reflected in our actions? There are some things worth dying for but how many of us would give our lives for someone else? This is exactly what Jesus did for us!
Did you know that persecution will accompany spiritual growth? This will happen because a consequence of growing in Christ is becoming more aware of others needs than our own. This will be the natural result of growing in His love.
Persecution has become a dirty word in the age of “seeker friendly” churches. Christianity is meant to be confrontational. We have worked to make it acceptable. It is no reason that the power of God is missing from so many of our lives.
The persecution and criticism will come. This will affect us less when our focus shifts from self to the needs of others. I don’t like it when people criticize me but realize that this does not affect God’s view of me! He loves me and compared to Him, the people who criticize are nothing.
If we are unable to sleep or have trouble eating when people treat us badly it is because we are placing too much value on how they feel about us. Growing in Christ will cause us to value what God thinks about us more than the value we place on what people think about us.
Over the years I’ve learned that the only people who will let us down are those whom we lean on. If we learn to lean on God instead of people, we will never be let down.
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