Joy · Judging · Shame · Suffering

joyful suffering…

A recent conversation left me feeling a bit… I don’t know… confused…?

Hearing about how anger stirred… when another heard comments made about me…

Comments aimed at my faith… perceived by the hearer as judgmental… hypocritical…

I wasn’t sure how to respond…

The Believer who shared the stories… was visibly angered… me not so much…

Those who don’t know Him… just… don’t… know…

That’s why He said in His suffering…

Father, forgive them for they know not what they do…

Then this morning… reading through Acts… I read…

So they went on their way from the presence of the Council, rejoicing that they had been considered worthy to suffer shame for His name.

Acts 5:41-42 NASB

The apostles… arrested… flogged… for healing in Jesus’s name… responded with joy… not anger… at being considered worthy to suffer shame for His name…

Even though I wasn’t arrested… flogged… or suffer personally… I seem to have been shamed for His name… at least in the eyes of the one who shared their heart with me… their anger over unjust hypocrisy…

Me… I didn’t get angry… but I didn’t rejoice either…

Like I said… confused was the word… What did they see…? How am I being perceived…? Why do they care what I believe…?

After reading Acts… I realized… in a country founded on Christianity… Jesus historically seen as good… we’ve forgotten the truth… of the way He walked on earth…

We’ve forgotten… He was treated shamefully by mainstream society… including His church…

We’ve forgotten… we should expect to be treated shamefully too…

We’ve forgotten… we should rejoice… to be counted worthy to suffer shaming for His name…

Have you found yourself offended…? justified in your anger…? by unpleasant treatment from unbelievers… because of your faith…?

Well think again… reconsider your response…

In Christ Jesus… we should rejoice… at being counted worthy to be made fun of… treated shamefully… or suffering… for His name…

Great peace have they which love thy law: And nothing shall offend them.

Psalm 119:163 KJV

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