Ready to die for Jesus? A friend of mine recently became a believer. Her husband didn’t talk to her for a week once she finally told him. He’s afraid for her. He doesn’t particularly mind that she believes, but he minds that she goes to church. He fears for her life as if any of his 15-20 members of his family catch on that she is a believer they will kill her and maybe him also. They have two young kids.
She came to visit me and told me of this because it had been hard with her husband and I asked her if she was afraid. She pointed to her heart and said
“once you have God in your heart there is nothing to be afraid of.”
Save your life or loose it
Right now I have Matthew 16:24 in front of me. It writes, “if anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul?” Jesus was clear. This is not a parable we have to ask him the meaning of. He knows what the better thing is. It’s to be with Him for eternity, and not to focus on the things of this world.
Something greater than life
The other day I was watching the gospel of John with some friends and as I saw the disciples of Jesus walking with him, talking with him etc. it struck me that these are the people Jesus called to him and to die a similar death he did. These men could have lived their lives as they would have known it, worked and married, had kids and then died. But Jesus had something different for them. He called them to a life that was different, that wasn’t their own. And he called them to a death that was painful and probably not the death they would have chosen. Jesus called them to something greater and death is not something we need to be afraid of because there is eternal life waiting for us with Him.
To share in his glory means also to share in his sufferings.
Being killed for our faith may or may not be on the table for some of us but for our friends it is certainly a potential, or at least being cut off from family etc. And if we really walk with Christ we must consider it to be an actual potential for us too. When my friend shared her heart about the matter I felt in awe and inspired but then felt challenged – how would I feel in her situation? What if I too had 2 kids and a husband I would lose, or worse, put in danger? To share in his glory means also to share in his sufferings.
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