Persecution: How to Handle It... And Thrive.
Updated: Jul 19, 2019
What are you willing to endure for the sake of the Messiah and the Kingdom of Heaven? I endured most of the above just today.
So, what do we do when these things happen? First, know that you must be making Trickster mad. You are doing something right. Second, let's thank the Father that the type of persecution we just underwent did not send us home to Him just yet. In some places of the world, the persecution it the type at the edge of a sword or the end of a rifle. Despite the pain, you're still here. Next, let's head to Scripture to see what it has to say.
So, first off, that meanie just earned you a blessing! Why, we could use some blessings, couldn't we? "Blessed are you when people hate you, when they exclude you and insult you and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man." Luke 6:22
Your future address is in the good neighborhood. "Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." Matthew 5:44
You just got tougher. Check out 2 Corinthians 12:10: "That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong."
You're in good company. "If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first." John 15:18. YEP. Yeshua (aka Jesus) said that.
Your hero is coming to your rescue. 2 Timothy 3:10-13 "But you, you have closely followed my teaching, conduct, purpose in life, trust, steadfastness, love and perseverance — as well as the persecutions and sufferings that came my way in Antioch, Iconium and Lystra. What persecutions I endured! Yet the Lord rescued me from all of them. And indeed, all who want to live a godly life united with the Messiah Yeshua will be persecuted, while evil people and impostors will go from bad to worse, deceiving others and being deceived themselves."
Finally, put it in perspective.
"I have said these things to you so that, united with me, you may have shalom. In the world, you have tsuris [troubles]. But be brave! I have conquered the world!" John 16:33.
So, your next steps should look like this:
Thank you, Father for the troubles, trials and persecutions.
Help me, Lord to not misstep or be tripped up by them.
I choose to forgive _________ [insert name of persecutor].
I speak blessings over _____________ [insert name of persecutor].
"Wait, what???" Some of you are baulking. How could we bless them? Bless them to see the error of their ways. Bless them to receive a kind heart in place of a hard heart. Bless them to distinguish truth from lies. Bless them into a relationship [or deeper one] with the Lord.
Congratulations! You've just passed a test, earned another reward, made the devil madder and your Heavenly Father beam with joy!