As a Christian How Should I Handle Persecution?

Ibelieve from study of the scripture that as Christians we can expect persecution at times.

 I don't have time or room enough for background study on this today but you can do your own, if you like--run some references and see if you agree. 

In John 16:33, Jesus tells his disciples--"In this world you will have trouble. But take heart for I have overcome the world."

And in 1 Peter 4:12-13 we read--"Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you. But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings, that, when His glory shall be revealed, you may be glad also with exceeding joy."

Scripture makes it clear that he is referring to sufferings for the cause of Christ, not things we have brought upon ourselves through unwise choices or ungodly living.

First of all, we are to take heart. 

To me that means to be encouraged, to lift up my head in His name.

Many hours could be spent on researching "take heart"--I think--if not days! 

Then we are to rejoice--oh me, oh my, really??

How do I rejoice?

How do I rejoice if my children or grandchildren succeed in their endeavors?

How do I rejoice when my favorite sports team wins?

How did I rejoice when I first realized that my sins had been washed away--as far as the east is from the west?

I usually let out some kind of shout--

I usually tell someone and brag a little on them--

I usually go about singing, making melody in my heart.

This is a huge subject with huge ramifications and I don't want to make it a long, lengthy sermon.

I do, however, want to encourage you to do the right thing.

We are to fan the flame inside of us and encourage ourselves--sometimes my flame dwindles down to a very small ember and I am not proud of the way I handle things as a Christian.

Other times, I see the growth in me when I handle things as Jesus would and am amazed at the work the Holy Spirit has done in me.

That is the person I want to be--the one who lets the Holy Spirit have complete control.

Lord, show me Your ways--teach me to trust and to walk daily, hourly, minute by minute with your precious Holy Spirit.

Hoping your day is truly blessed, Dianne

In this piece of art, the subject has surrendered her whole heart to the Lord for her whole life and will give Him praise through dance.