In the Bible, we read about people who willingly gave up their lives because they couldn't deny that Jesus is the Son of God. Today, we might not face persecution to that extent, but there will be times that we face persecutions for our Christian faith and our beliefs (Matthew 5:10-12). Instead of choosing the pleasures of this world and what makes us comfortable, we want to encourage you to choose to follow wherever He leads no matter the cost (Hebrews 11:32-38). Modern-day persecution doesn't look like being killed for our faith. But, it does look like being made fun of, people talking behind our back, disdain or insults, being left out, mistrust and being unfairly judged. We are called to be people who represent Christ in every season, good or bad (1 Peter 3:13-17). When it comes to faith, our experiences matter. His faithfulness in the past can sustain us through what we're going through now and serve as our testimony when encouraging others. We must fight approval addiction by realizing that we can't serve both God and others (ourselves), and be unashamed to proclaim His name in all circumstances even when it's uncomfortable (Romans 1:16). To do this, we must keep our eyes set on heaven (2 Corinthians 4:16-18; Hebrews 12:1-3).
1) After taking a long look at my heart, how willing am I to suffer for Christ?
2) Am I someone who represents Christ in all areas and seasons of my life?
3) How has my life changed because of Jesus?