Philippians 1:29–“For it has been given to you on Christ’s behalf not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for Him.”
Why is life so hard? Because we fail to grasp our identity in Christ. To be fair, it is to be expected. In order for life to be easy, truly easy, we must RADICALLY ACCEPT our identity in Jesus. Anything short of an understanding and acceptance of the true Christian faith will lead to constant frustration, disappointment, confusion, and a lack of joy. Because this message is so important, a concise outline is necessary so that the reader can understand.
What to expect:
- To be misunderstood…constantly…and to be OK with it.
- Isaiah 53:7a-–He was oppressed and afflicted, yet He did not open His mouth. Like a lamb led to the slaughter…
- To suffer…a lot.
- John 15:18-19—If the world hates you, understand that it hated Me before it hated you. If you were of this world the world would love you as its own.
- To have peace in spite of being hated, misunderstood, and unloved.
- Philippians 4:6-7–Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses every thought, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
- The Lord knows we are going to be hurt by people.
- Matthew 10:16a–Look, I am sending you out like sheep among wolves…
- Christianity is a suicide mission…for our flesh!
- Matthew 16: 24-25–Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone wants to come with Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of Me will find it.
So, what is there to do but embrace the persecution of the world and rest ONLY in the Lord who has commissioned each of us to die every day at the hands of those who will test us to see if we will walk by the flesh or walk by the Spirit! The love of Jesus is enough to substitute the lack of love by every other human being on earth!