Persecutions happen to do one thing – increase our dependence on God. Paul was whipped, beaten, stoned, shipwrecked, constantly hunted down, experienced extreme hunger and cold – a life so different from his life as a Pharisee.
I am blessed to be in a country that doesn’t persecute believers. I drive to church every week. I’ve never been whipped (except by my dad’s belt), I’ve never been stoned. Life is easy, and comfortable for the most part, hence my independence from God.
Do I really want an uncomfortable life so that I’ll be passionate for him? Do I need to be shaken to the core? May it never happen. And may I open my eyes to the truth that the entire body of Christ has been suffering persecutions throughout the world.
I pray for a freer world, less pain for Christians and for all. I pray for everyone’s dependence on God even when things are super smooth and easy. I pray for every Christian who cannot even sing a hymn loudly. And for me, may I never take this for granted again. And may I never disown Jesus or be ashamed of Him even in the smallest of ways.