O God, have mercy on me, for people are hounding me. My foes attack me all day long. I am constantly hounded by those who slander me, and many are boldly attacking me. But when I am afraid, I will put my trust in you. I praise God for what he has promised. I trust in God, so why should I be afraid? What can mere mortals do to me? - Psalms 56:1-4
Reading in the Psalms today I was reminded of the consequences of being a follower of Christ - a child of the living God - and someone that takes seriously their discipleship.
When you first choose to be a disciple of Christ life does get easier and you experience the joy of fellowship and God's grace.
As you mature though in your faith, there will come a time when you begin to understand what it means to take up the cross and battle each day. You come to a realization of what it means to pay the price for you faith in God.
People will openly discriminate against you because of your faith, they will call you ignorant, they will avoid you, and speak against you in private.
In some parts of our world it is even worse. Because of your faith in Christ, you could be beheaded, have your children killed in front of you, and have your wife raped in front of you by extremist.
Jesus never promised that following him would be easy, fun, or without consequence. But this should not discourage us. Rather, it should bring us to a state of worshiping our LORD.
In psalms 56 you can see David come to this realization as he speaks. He processes his situation out loud. He cries out for mercy, describes the evil that surrounding him, and then says, "wait a minute, I've got nothing to be afraid of, because I worship the one true God. I know his promises are bigger than my fears."
That is where I want to be living every day of my life. In complete abandonment of fear and concern for what others will say about my faith and discipleship with Christ.
God, how do I get to that point where I have complete trust and faith in you? I want to be there every day, every moment of my life. Holy Spirit, remind me of your promises, increase my courage, and soften my heart to the world around me - the same world that pursues me, disappoints me, and praises me. Jesus, give me your eyes so I can see the lost, give me your heart for the wounded, and help me to live on the edge for you without fear. Amen.
- What keeps you from complete faith and trust in God?
- Is there an area of your life today that you need to stop worrying about and instead focus on the promises of God?
- Who do you know that needs to hear this Good News about God's faithfulness and protection?
Make it a great day!