|(Pic I took on top of Cold Mountain, NC last week)|
We all need reminded of God’s truth over the lies of the world and self-deception. I wrote this letter to a friend this morning and thought it may serve to encourage others.
When I chose to become a Christian, one of the toughest aspects, in the beginning anyway, when I stepped out from the crowd, was the immediate recoil from my "friends". It stunned me and I was not anticipating that strike. It took me a long time to move from that initial pain as they were who I hung out with and so I believed they liked me for who I was. The truth is I simply made them comfortable, as someone they looked up to because I lived on the edge of craziness, with their sin. When I stopped committing those 'easy' outward sins, they became convicted. I said nothing, but we don't need to sometimes. Those who know us well, know what, or better said, Who, is changing us and they do not like Him (...and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved." Mth. 10:22).
For some weird reason we tend to think we will be different than the millions who have gone before us and will be able to handle both types of lives in such a 'cool' way that the enemies of God will accept us...not so. "For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ." Gal. 1:10. We WILL be hated, ostracized, maligned, ridiculed, and led to the slaughter by those who we once held close.
Why? Here are two, no three reasons:
1. "God's light came into the world, but people loved the darkness more than the light, for their actions were evil. All who do evil hate the light and refuse to go near it for fear their sins will be exposed. But those who do what is right come to the light so others can see that they are doing what God wants." John 3:19-21.
2. "But people who aren't spiritual can't receive these truths from God's Spirit. It all sounds foolish to them and they can't understand it, for only those who are spiritual can understand what the Spirit means." 1Cor. 2:14.
3. "For you will be expelled from the synagogues, and the time is coming when those who kill you will think they are doing a holy service for God." John 16:2.
BUT: "But now, O Jacob, listen to the LORD who created you. O Israel, the one who formed you says, "Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine." Is. 43:1
AND "Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing." James 1:2-4
Glory to God our Hightower.