Let’s Get Candid

I’ve been working hard behind the scenes for months on my new ministry for Christian women, CandidlyChristian.com. My goal was to create a safe place where women could be honest about their faith, failures, and forgiveness. Let’s face it, life isn’t always neat and tidy, being a Christian doesn’t change that.

Those of you who know my testimony, know that God has used the honesty of other Christian women to grow my faith more than anything else. Knowing that other Christian women don’t have it all together is a huge blessing. Knowing it’s okay to be less than perfect, what a relief!

I will never forget the first time a Christian woman admitted to me that she didn’t have it all together. She wasn’t just any Christian woman, she was our pastor’s daughter-in-law, super fit, a stay-at-home, super mom who was part of the worship team and an international missionary. I’m telling you, she was everything a good Christian should be, and she knew her Bible inside and out.

And then she confessed that she struggled with depression. That she questioned her faith because of an overwhelming feeling of worthlessness. This was super woman, and she struggled with some of the same things I did.

Another time the woman who hosted our Bible study confessed that her house wasn’t always as clean as we saw it each week. In fact, she said if we showed up unannounced at any other time during the week, that it would be a wreck.

Again, a huge burden was lifted. Not because I rejoiced in their struggles, but because it made me realize that struggling was okay.

Who knew it was okay to be less than perfect?

Her candid confession was a balm to my soul.

Many other candid confessions have followed. Some of them speak to me, others make me hurt for the women who are going through them all alone.

When I’ve shared my own candid confessions with other christian women, I usually get one of two responses.

Encouraging Support or Utter CondemnationIMG_1518

Sometimes well-meaning christian women come across the wrong way. Most of them don’t mean to, but it happens from time to time. And it happens often enough to make us scared to be honest.

If you are a Christian woman, I would love to have you join me at CandidlyChristian.com: A safe place to be open and honest about faith, failure, and forgiveness.

Let’s Get Candid!

 

 

 

 

I Shall Live

You may or may not have heard of Beth Moore’s Siesta Scripture Memory Team, but I’m taking part in it this year and loving it. The basis behind it is that you memorize two verses a month (on the first and fifteenth). Psalm 118:17 is my second verse for this month, and while I know I’ve read the entire Bible, I don’t remember really seeing this verse before yesterday, but it has hit me hard.

“I shall not die, but I shall live, and recount the deeds of the Lord.”
~ Psalm 118:17
(ESV – emphasis mine)

This verse stirs me in a way I can barely express through words. Before Jesus, we were dead in our transgressions, separated from God, but because of Him, we shall live. He has given us a new life (Romans 6:4), and the old has passed away (2 Corinthians 5:17).

Because of Christ, we can live not only in eternity, but we can live a full life here on earth bringing glory to our Savior. We can share about His mighty works. And not only that, but He can live through us and in us through the person of the Holy Spirit.

 John 10:10 says, “A thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy. But I (Jesus) came to give you life–life that is full and good.”

Jesus came to give us life. Not just air to breathe, but one where we actively live a life according to what He has called us to. Colossians 3:1 says, “You were raised from death with Christ. So live for what is in heaven, where Christ is sitting at the righthand of God.”

Jesus didn’t just give us life, He gave us something to live for.

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”
~ 2 Corinthians 5:17

 Live

Prepare the Way

As I was reading about John the Baptist the other morning, it struck me that he didn’t have a problem when people stopped following him, to follow Jesus.

In fact, that was his goal.

He simply saw his mission as preparing they way, and I believe that we are called to do the same.

Philippians 2:3 calls us to, “Do nothing from selfish ambition or vain conceit…”

I think John got that.

But, I can’t help but wonder, do we? 

Are we content to simply point others towards Christ, or do we need that recognition?

Later in Philippians, Paul wrote, “…whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ.” (3:7)

Do we do that? Do I do that?

Do I count it all as a loss for the sake of Christ, or do I need my own following?

Obviously, I want to say it’s all for Christ, but is it? I’m really not too sure.

What about you?

Have you ever stopped to think about it?

Is this something that you have ever struggled with?

Trying to prepare the way for Jesus in the hearts of those around us, but getting a little fuzzy on where pointing to Him stops and pointing to yourself begins?

That’s my battle today. After all, shouldn’t our goal in life be more of Him and less of me?

So today, I encourage you to prepare the way for the Lord, and check your own heart to see if you are holding on a little too tightly to the people you are pointing His way.

Frustration vs. Love

Have you ever had a day where you are just frustrated with people?

I have. It actually happens more often than I would prefer to admit. I get frustrated. I get frustrated with the online world pretending to be perfect, yet really being prideful, rude, superficial. I get frustrated with people in authority who think rules don’t apply to them. I get frustrated when someones selfishness hurts those I love. But what it really comes down to is that people aren’t my problem.

My frustration is really caused by my own lack of love for others.

That’s my issue.

It isn’t people.

It isn’t the situation.

It is me and my sinfulness.

I’ve found that people probably aren’t going to change.

I’m going to run into people on Facebook that answer a sincere question with a response that says “just Google it” or ask a question just to lash out at others who disagree with them.

I’m going to have to face people in my life that have different priorities for my children than I do.

I’m going to experience changes brought on by others.

But what I’ve found is that while other people aren’t going to change the way they operate, I can. Instead of looking at others in frustration, I can cry out to God for more of Him:

Lord, give me more of you!”

That should be my battle cry.

Not, “Lord, fix them!!!” but “Lord, fix me!”

I need help to love others and walk in love no matter how many people hurt my feelings or came across as harsh. I need help to love others no matter what. Help to be a light that shined His love to the world.

My guess is that I’m not alone in this. You may not be as selfishly frustrated as me, but I think we can all stand a little more Jesus in us.

1 Corinthians 13 tells us that love is patient and kind. That it always protects, trusts, hopes, and perseveres. That it doesn’t envy, boast, dishonor others, become easily angered, or self-seeking. It doesn’t keep a record of wrongs, but rejoices in the truth.

When we become frustrated with the people around us, it’s our own lack of love that shines through.

We lose our patience. We get easily angered. We stop protecting, trusting, and hoping, and end up dishonoring others. We make that record of wrongs and ultimately become self-seeking. 

Focusing on the bad doesn’t change it, it just makes our day worse.

And we don’t need that.

Likewise, loving more doesn’t make the hurtful and hateful things disappear, it just helps us to look at them differently.

Getting frustrated with others, focusing on the bad, is one of those areas that I thrive in. I let others bring me down. I shift my focus from God to man and it’s a life-long struggle for me.

Instead of leaning on God, I get wrapped up in the world and then it knocks me down. But God helps me get up again.

That reminds me of a song I use to listen to years ago:

“I get knocked down, but I get up again..” – the difference is that now I know that it’s only through God’s help that I can stand. And you can too.

So today, I want to encourage you, when you start to get frustrated by people, ask God to help you love them more.

“…it is by faith you stand firm.”
~ 2 Corinthians 2:9

Old Fashioned Movie Review

OFDVD_300x250bannerEver since a friend from church told me about “Old Fashioned” the new movie that came out in theaters in February, I have been dying to see it. I practically had the trailer memorized having watched it so many times, and last night, I finally got to watch it! Below, you’ll find Paul and I’s review, but first, I wanted to share a bit about this movie with you. (FYI – it came out on DVD today!)

About Old Fashioned

A romantic-drama, OLD FASHIONED centers on Clay Walsh, a former frat boy who gives up his reckless carousing and now runs an antique shop in a small Midwestern college town. There, he has become notorious for his lofty and outdated theories on love and romance as well as for his devout belief in God. When Amber Hewson, a free-spirited young woman with a restless soul, drifts into the area and rents the apartment above his shop, she finds herself surprisingly drawn to his strong faith and noble ideas, which are new and intriguing to her. And Clay, though he tries to fight and deny it, simply cannot resist being attracted to her spontaneous and passionate embrace of life. Ultimately, Clay must step out from behind his relational theories and Amber must overcome her own fears and deep wounds as the two of them, together, attempt the impossible: an “old-fashioned” and God-honoring courtship in contemporary America. 

Our Review

We watched this movie last night as a family. My mom is here visiting, so she watched it with us. While this movie is rated PG-13, it was portrait as a good old-fashioned romance. Before I get to my thoughts on the movie, let me share some of the other comments it received:

“Slow-paced, but in a good way.” (My mom)

“Really good.” (Our 12-year old son who didn’t understand a lot of what was going on)

“I LOVED IT!!! I probably watch it a second time in the morning.” (The friend who originally told me about it)

And Paul was excited to see how they tied everything together, and said they exceeded his expectations.

So what did I think?

I’m still sorting through my thoughts on this. I don’t think this is a very good family film as it’s really geared more towards young adults. Originally I wanted to pass it on to my mother-in-law, but after watching it I wasn’t sure that was such a good idea, however my friend is going to buy her own copy to watch with her young adult children.

In My Own Words

Old Fashioned is a film about a man committed to Christ, and a woman running from life.

While Clay Walsh struggles to live-out his commitment, he thinks he is unworthy because of his past. In the midst of his struggle, Amber rents the apartment above his shop and does everything in her power to test his convictions. Somehow he finds that endearing and falls in love with her. Obviously, he also found it a bit disconcerting, but puts the blame on himself instead of her.

Amber admires Clay’s old-fashioned ways. Even if her friends think he’s a whack job. Clay’s friends have issues of their own, but encourage his relationship with Amber.

While I know strippers, pornography, and discussing sexual parters is part of modern day, I didn’t expect them to be so prevalent in this old-fashioned movie. While it doesn’t show anything inappropriate, there is a ton of sex talk, and a lot of other innuendo and such that is implied. Had I realized how much of that was in the film, I would not have chosen it for a family film, but all of that was left out of the trailer, blurb, etc.

But don’t take my word for it, you can watch the trailer for yourself below, and pick up your copy of this DVD from PureFlix or Amazon. As I said, I am the only one who didn’t think this movie was outstanding. 4 out of 5 loved it.

Full Disclosure: I received a free copy of this DVD from Propeller Consulting LLC in exchange for posting an honest review.

 

 

A Lack of Trust

Do you ever have issues trusting other people?

I was reading through Philemon the other day and was astounded at Paul’s confidence that Philemon would honor his wishes. I kept thinking, if I were Philemon, would I be quick to forgive the runaway slave, or would I punish him more because he got one of my friends involved? (Not that I believe in slavery, but if I were wronged and the person who wronged me went to a friend, would I be quick to forgive?)

As I re-read the passage, I stopped at the verses where Paul thanks God for Philemon. He had reason to have confidence in Philemon, because he had heard about his love for God and all the saints. Those who love are quick to forgive. They hold no record of wrongs (1 Cor. 13:5).

A Lesson from PhilemonBut not all of us are like that.

Not all of us are quick to forgive, and often we do hold a record of wrongs.

Even with Paul’s confidence in Philemon, and the testimony of his love, I still find myself wondering how that story ended. How did Philemon receive Onesimus? Did he welcome him as a beloved brother in Christ? Did he send him back to Paul? Did he punish him for running away? We don’t know how the story ends, but it still speaks to my heart.

The overpowering question is, does it matter?

Does it matter how the story ends?

If Paul did the right thing, does it matter if Philemon was obedient. Obviously it would have mattered to Onesimus, but what if it wasn’t a person involved? Does the trustworthiness of someone else matter when it comes to doing the right thing?

Should we let our lack of trust in others keep us from offering help where we can?

Often times we justify not aiding others, because we don’t have faith in them as people. We doubt their sincerity or motives. Yet I’m convicted that the right thing is still the right thing, even if we don’t share the confidence Paul had in Philemon. Who knows, maybe our ability to love others could lead them to Christ.

And maybe, just maybe, Paul’s confidence wasn’t in Philemon at all, but in our great God.

Maybe it’s not about whether we trust people or not, but whether we believe God can use all things for His glory.

Will I still be tempted to doubt people? Probably. But it’s whether we allow that doubt to control our actions that matters.

Gospel Scriptures

I have an obsession with the Gospel.

I love it.

I love everything about it.

Just hearing it makes me breathe a little deeper.

That’s why I have piles of books that are centered on the Gospel:

But more than that, I love reading Scriptures about the Gospel.

Truth be told, I have books about it because I love to read. And what better to read about than what you are obsessed with? But the Scriptures are what really matter. The Scriptures are the basis of all the books, and they are the basis of my love for Jesus.

With that in mind, I wanted to share some of my favorite scriptures that summarize the Gospel with you today.

Gospel Scriptures

NOTE: All scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version® 1973, 1978, 1984, and 2011 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved. (Emphasis mine)

Ephesians 2:1-10

“As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world… gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.  For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” 

 

Philippians 2:5-11

“In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:

Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross!

Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

1 Corinthians 15:1-9

“Now, brothers and sisters, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain.

For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third dayaccording to the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, and then to the Twelve. After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers and sisters at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles, and last of all he appeared to me also, as to one abnormally born.

For I am the least of the apostles and do not even deserve to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God.”

Romans 3:21-26

“But now apart from the law the righteousness of God has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his blood—to be received by faith. He did this to demonstrate his righteousness, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished—he did it to demonstrate his righteousness at the present time, so as to be just and the one who justifies those who have faith in Jesus.”

Acts 10:34-43

“I now realize how true it is that God does not show favoritism but accepts from every nation the one who fears him and does what is right. You know the message God sent to the people of Israel, announcing the good news of peace through Jesus Christ, who is Lord of all. You know what has happened throughout the province of Judea, beginning in Galilee after the baptism that John preached—how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and power, and how he went around doing good and healing all who were under the power of the devil, because God was with him.

“We are witnesses of everything he did in the country of the Jews and in Jerusalem. They killed him by hanging him on a cross, but God raised him from the dead on the third day and caused him to be seen. He was not seen by all the people, but by witnesses whom God had already chosen—by us who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead. He commanded us to preach to the people and to testify that he is the one whom God appointed as judge of the living and the dead. All the prophets testify about him that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.”

Titus 3:3-7

At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.”

Isaiah 53

Click here to read full chapter

(verses 4-6)

“Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering,
yet we considered him punished by God,
stricken by him, and afflicted.

But he was pierced for our transgressions, 
he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was on him,
and by his wounds we are healed.

We all, like sheep, have gone astray,
each of us has turned to our own way;

and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.”

John 3:16-18

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.

Romans 6:1-11

“What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.

For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly also be united with him in a resurrection like his. For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin—because anyone who has died has been set free from sin.

Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him. The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God.

In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.”

Colossians 2:8-15

“See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the elemental spiritual forces of this world rather than on Christ.

For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority. In him you were also circumcised with a circumcision not performed by human hands. Your whole self ruled by the flesh was put off when you were circumcised by Christ, having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through your faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead.

When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.”

Ephesians 2:11-22

“Therefore, remember that formerly you who are Gentiles by birth and called “uncircumcised” … remember that at that time you were separate from Christ… without hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ.

For he himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, by setting aside in his flesh the law with its commands and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new humanity out of the two, thus making peace, and in one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility. He came and preached peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near. For through him we both have access to the Father by one Spirit.

Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.”

What about you?

What are your favorite Gospel Scriptures?

Share your answer in the comments below!

 

Did you like this list? You can find several more Scripture lists I have compiled here.

In Case of Emergency…

1334367_53053749Years ago, I came across a unique set of “Emergency Numbers.” Instead of listing the police and fire station, they referenced Scriptures. I loved it so much, I wrote them all in the front of one of my Bibles.

Why am I telling you this?

We wrapped up our study through Hebrews 11 last week, it was a little early, but it was complete. So for this week, I put together some “Emergency Procedures” to look at.

I think it’s important to turn to God when we face problems of all different shapes and sizes. After all, Jesus said, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28) and “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” (John 14:27)

God doesn’t promise us a perfect life as Christians. We will still face heart ache, pain, sickness, and life on earth, but we can do it with Him by our side, with His help, and He can make it bearable.

Emergency Procedures

In case of emergency contact God.
Available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year
Including weekends and holidays

In case of worry, find: Psalm 56:3 or Psalm 23:4

In case of stress, dial: Galatians 1:10 and Psalm 62:1-2

In case of pain, look up: 2 Corinthians 12:7-10, Psalm 69:29, and/or 2 Corinthians 4:16

If you are lost, call on: Psalm 46:10, Matthew 7:7-8, and Proverbs 3:5-6

When you are insecure, contact: Hebrews 10:35-36, 1 Corinthians 15:10, Proverbs 3:26, and 1 Thessalonians 5:24

What other emergency references would you add to this list?

Share your answer in the comments below!

 

Want to download the PDF? Click here

Did you like this list? You can find several more lists of Scriptures to live by here.

Faith Promises

I was up in the middle of the night last night with my elderly dog. And while I was waiting for him to finish his business outside, I decided to scroll through Facebook on my phone (horrible idea, I know). It just so happens that I came across two different posts that related to today’s study. They were both about faith (or a lack of faith) in the promises of God. So today, I wanted to cover some of the things God has promised us, and a few of the things He hasn’t…

5 Promises from God

1. The Holy Spirit

“And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper,
to be with you forever…”

~ John 14:16

2. God Is Our Strength

“…they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength;
    they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
    they shall walk and not faint.

~ Isaiah 40:31

3. Our Needs Will Be Met

“And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.”

~ Philippians 4:19

4. Nothing Can Separate Us From The Love of God

“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.  For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers,  nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

~ Romans 8:37-39

5. Eternal Life

“For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

~ Romans 6:23

3 Things We Aren’t Promised

1. Everything We Ask For

Philippians 4:19 says God will supply for all of our needs, not all of our wants. James 4:3 says that when we ask and don’t receive, it’s because we ask with the wrong motives. God isn’t a magic genie. We can’t just rub the prayer lamp and have all of our wishes fulfilled. The God of the “Name it and Claim it” gospel isn’t the God of the Bible.

2. Health, Wealth, and Happiness

The prosperity Gospel is prominent in America today. Preachers tell us that God wants us to be happy, that if we give enough money, that we will be blessed beyond measure. But that isn’t found in the Bible.

Preachers will often refer to Jeremiah 29:11 where God promises the Israelites that He has a plan to prosper them. However, most prosperity preachers leave out that the people he makes that promise to all die in captivity. He had a plan to prosper their people after they died for their disobedience. It was a multigenerational promise that included 70 years of captivity.

In all actuality, God promised us that in this world we would have trouble (John 16:33), that we would face persecution (John 15:18-20), and that true riches are heavenly, not earthly (Matthew 6:19-20).

3. Works-based Salvation

Romans 6:23 promises eternal life as the gift of God. It isn’t something we can earn. There isn’t a certain threshold of sin that God tolerates before condemning someone to Hell. All sin has the same punishment, whether you tell a little white lie or go on a shooting rampage. Your only hope is the free gift of God through His Son, Jesus Christ. There is no penance you can pay to get into Heaven. There is nothing you can avoid. None of us are good enough to get into Heaven on our own. We all need Jesus.

==> You can download this week’s study sheet here

 

Faithfully Persecuted

For week seven of our study through Hebrews 11, we are looking at prophets and martyrs. While there were several Old Testament examples listed in verse 32, we don’t have to look back at all to see people being martyred for their faith. There is a mass martyrdom going on in Syria, and countless others that don’t always make the news. But being persecuted for your faith doesn’t always mean you are killed.

Here in the US, Christian businesses are being persecuted for not supplying birth control to their employees and refusing to cater to homosexual weddings. But honestly, we often don’t even need to look outside of our own lives to see persecution. 2 Timothy 3:12 says, “Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted…” So if you are not seeing persecution in your life, you might want to look at why not. Below, I have listed some of the ways normal Christians (whatever that means) can see persecution in their lives.

3 Ways Christians Can Be Persecuted in Everyday Life

1. Rejection

This is the most common way Christians are persecuted in everyday life in the United States. We are rejected by our families, shunned by our friends, and often excluded by people that could be wonderful friends if they gave us a chance.

2. Slander

Christians are often misunderstood. There are blanket statements that are applied to everyone who calls themselves a Christian, that aren’t necessarily true. Some people assume that because we are Christians, that we are intolerant, self-righteous, and hateful. And many times people aren’t afraid to say these things about us, even if they don’t know us.

3. Bullying and Peer Pressure

Sometimes we feel rejected because we aren’t invited to a party or event we wouldn’t have wanted to go to anyway, but often times, that is better than the alternative. Christians often face bullying and peer pressure. It can seem like the world wants to test our faith and convictions.

 

How do you see persecution in your life?

==> You can download this week’s study sheet here

 

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