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  • Writer's pictureOlufunmilayo Adekusibe

HOW TO OVERCOME PERSECUTION


 

Today’s Readings:

Hosea 14:2-10; Psalm 51:3-4,8-9,12-17; Matthew 10:16-23

 


CHRISTIANITY THRIVES ON PERSECUTION. It is in times of persecution that our Christian faith shines forth in its purity and sincerity. We say we are Christians on a regular day. Persecution is what provides us with an opportunity to prove that our faith is more than words. In many ways, Jesus hints at the fact that we cannot afford to be comfortable in this world. Being Christian means that you are aware that the world (with its ideas and practices which exclude thoughts or God and holiness) will not accept you, and that is okay. Jesus says: Matthew 10:16 – I am sending you out like sheep among wolves; so be cunning as serpents and yet as harmless as doves.


This means that you will be picked on for your faith and if you are not well-grounded, you will be led astray. Being cunning as a serpent means that you know what others are thinking and doing but you do not allow their actions distract you from who you are called to be and what you are expected to do. Your vocation is to be holy as God your Father is holy (Matthew 5:48). Your actions ought to follow this pattern of holiness by being conscious, impactful and relevant to the situations of the day. Will people like you for choosing to be holy and different? Chances are that you will be side-lined for your faith. But it is all right. Jesus consoles us with these words: You will be hated by all men on account of my name; but the man (or woman) who stands firm to the end will be saved.


There is no better consolation than the thought that all will be well in the end. It does not matter how the world treats you or your craft or work. What matters most is how God sees you. He calls you “my good and faithful servant” (Matthew 25:23). Our worth is not in the approval of men and women but of God. God’s approval is more than enough. True to His word, God is always preparing us through the different things we encounter. The disappointments we experience and the successes we record are all part of his plans for us. If we remain faithful, all things will be well for us and we shall be ready for our eternal rewards when He comes to calls us to Himself. So what should you do as you go through today?

Let God take care of you:

  • Place yourself in his hands through prayer

  • Carry out a daily examination of conscience at the end of each day

  • Be consistent in doing your work well

  • Be strong even when your strength seems to be failing

  • Always act in favour of the common good (think of how your actions affect others)

  • Ask God for help or helpers in times of need.

May God deliver you from evil and fill you with peace and joy always.

JUDE-MARY OWOH


 

Prayer:

  1. Father Lord, I place myself in your hands. Take care of me today, and always, in Jesus name.

  2. Protect me from evil, in Jesus name.

  3. Wash me from sin and keep me on your path of righteousness and favour, in Jesus name.

  4. Empower me to declare your praise by my words and deeds, in Jesus name.

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