2010-08-30 - A Godly Pep Talk
"Remember the words I spoke to you: 'No servant is greater than his master. If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also.'" (John 15:20)
When I am in need of a pep talk, I do not have to think twice whom to go to. Jesus understands when we feel like giving up, or when we wonder if our selfless acts and deeds are really making a difference. In today's Scripture verses, Jesus tells us not to be surprised when people attack us for being in Him. We should not take it personally. The persecution started when Jesus came down to Earth. We can see first-hand what hate has done to this world, so we should share love instead.
The Lord advises us not to be surprised if some people do not pay attention to our words. There were some who did not listen to Jesus, either. Their hearts were still stubborn to accept Jesus, even after witnessing His miracles.
It is difficult to be glad for people's ridicules and put-downs. But their responses can show us that unbelievers may see us as a threat to their sometimes evil, wrong, and misguided way of thinking. Society would welcome believers with open arms, if we shared its beliefs, but we challenge people and make them take another look at their views - and that scares them. We can pose a threat to their norms and lifestyles.
Be of good courage. You and I are making a difference when we don't back down from our faith. Some hate you and me because we follow Christ. They do not experience talking to the Lord every day, as we do; they haven't learned to cast their cares on Him as we have. They search in vain for some relief and peace, while we do not. We have already found it in Jesus.
Lord, I am discouraged, and know after I talk with You, I will feel better. I am committed to Your call, but don't see any fruitful results of my labors. Am I doing something wrong? Is this where You want me? Is this a place of testing and endurance? I keep thinking of reasons, and now I want to hear the truth from You. I am ready to hear from You. In Jesus' name I pray, Amen.
Think of a time you or someone else has been persecuted for being a Jesus follower.