Someone has said, "Good judgment comes from bad experience, and a lot of that comes from bad judgment". We live and hopefully we learn. Even in tough times, and sometimes especially in tough times there is something to be gained.
Jesus said, "Blessed are those who have been persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven" (Matthew 5:10). God knows and provides for His own. Whatever the child of God endures for the sake of His Lord, he has a refuge that is steadfast and sure. As Stephen was about to be put to death for his faith, he said, "Behold, I see the heavens opened up and the Son of man standing at the right hand of God" (Acts 7:56). With the eye of faith and as hope as an anchor of the soul (II Corinthians 5:7; Hebrews 6:19) the disciple of Christ is able to continue through the persecutions and trials of this life.
We should say with those of the past that we are "strangers and exiles on the earth" (Hebrews 11:13) and that we "seek a better country, that is a heavenly one" (Hebrews 11:16). If this is the case then we will make it our purpose while upon the earth to do the will of God, which is indeed the "whole duty" of man (Eccl. 12:13-14). In seeking to follow the values and teaching of our Lord there is a natural conflict that arises. Jesus said to His own, "if you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you....if they persecuted me, they will also persecute you..." (John 15:19-29).
The prophet Isaiah pictured the coming Messiah as the rejected and suffering Messiah (ch.53). He lived in the will of His Father in heaven as no other ever has or ever will. How blessed indeed it is for one to share in that persecution and suffering. Righteousness always has its opponents but when one has been mistreated because on what is right, they are in pretty good company.
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