Saturday, November 24, 2012

It's Worth the Trouble

Today, in a strangely counter-intuitive way, these words from Amy Carmichael's Candles in the Dark encouraged my heart greatly.  I am sharing them here in hope and prayer they are an encouragement to you as well.

"Don't be surprised if there is attack on your work, on you who are called to do it, on your innermost nature - the hidden man of the heart.  It must be so.  The great thing is not to be surprised, not to count it strange - for that plays into the hand of the enemy.

Is it possible that anyone should set himself to exalt our beloved Lord and not become instantly a target for many arrows? The very fact that your work depends utterly on Him and can't be done for a moment without Him calls for a very close walk and a constant communion of spirit. This alone is enough to account for anything the enemy can do."

Apostle Paul says that all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.  James brings it up a notch:

Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. James 1:2-4

The book of 1 Peter is full of encouragement for the suffering believers.

Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you, which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you; but to the degree that you share the sufferings of Christ, keep on rejoicing, so that also at the revelation of His glory you may rejoice with exultation. I Peter 4:12-13

If we claim to be followers of the crucified Savior, we really shouldn't be surprised.  I guess at some point it gets to be our turn.  It may feel like it, but we know it's not going to last forever. And unlike those who don't know the Lord, we can enter into the suffering knowing it's not meaningless.  It's not for nothing.  The fruit these trials will yield one day will be well worth the trouble - both now and when we see Him face to face.

For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us. Romans 8:18

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