You know what…Many moons ago, when I was really starting to understand who I was, in terms of my relationship with my Heavenly Father, I didn’t quite accept the possibility of attacks coming against me. What I mean is this…I thought that once I was on the right track of following my Father, that things involving me would be just “peachy keen.” I was under the illusion that Satan’s hands… & those of his workers… would be bound. Not so. This illusion definitely didn’t come from God. I think it came from me just “wanting” it to be so. When you first come into the knowledge of God & who you are with respect to him…it can be extremely exhilarating. That’s what happened to me. I got so caught up in these “out of this world…supernatural…fantastic” revelations…that I didn’t give enough attention to who is always working against the “wonderment” of the Father. Yes, the damn Devil. He is constantly roaming the earth, “to & fro,” seeking out who he can devour. Oh…yeah. And…the bastard has all of his cohorts helping him. Not to scare you…but, there is a “gazillion” of them (humans & demons). Now.
Jesus says, “20 Remember the word that I said to you, ‘Servants are not greater than their master.’ If they persecuted me, they will persecute you; if they kept my word, they will keep yours also. 21 But they will do all these things to you on account of my name, because they do not know him who sent me.” (John 15:20-21) So…here is the warning. Jesus is telling us that we, too… will be persecuted. Meaning? The Voice of the Martyrs in Canada, has described “persecution” as: “These actions range from ridicule, restriction, certain kinds of harassment, or discrimination on one end of the spectrum to torture, imprisonment, ostracism, or killing on the other.” So…disciples of Christ will endure persecution…no doubt. O.k.
You now…must understand this part… While persecution will come to you, it will not prevail against you if you are following God. Meaning What? Meaning…they may lock you up in prison but, this does not mean they have won against you. If they lock you up, as a way of persecuting you, this just means that you must petition to God for his will to be done throughout the ordeal. (You must mean this when you say it.) Ask God to give you his strength to endure this test of your spirit. Ask him to teach you whatever it is He wants you to learn during the ordeal. Never…give in to the Devil. And…as the saying goes, “Never let them see you sweat.” Remember, God is always in charge…all the time. You would not be locked-up if He did not allow it to happen. Now…Don’t get it twisted. I did not say that He “caused it”…I said He “allowed it.” Ask him to reveal to you his purpose in you being locked-up. Ask him for his mercy so that you can endure this ordeal in the most Christ like way possible. Ask him to use this ordeal to bring you ever so close to him…in ways that you have not experienced before. Ask him to make you better, & not bitter…by what you are experiencing. The bottom line of this is this…Don’t let persecutions break you, let them…build you. Build you into the being you were destined to be… in accord with the will of God. O.k. Let’s keep going.
If you let the attacks, & persecutions that are going to come…build you into the person that God wants you to be…then, Satan will not have defeated you during the time of the persecution. Not at all. He will have served only as a vessel, used by God, to drive you closer to God. You know what Satan will then, say…”DAMN!!! My plan didn’t work!” I like the way that the Apostle Paul described the persecutions that God allowed him to go through. Apostle Paul puts it this way, “Therefore, since we are justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through whom we have obtained access to this grace in which we stand; and we boast in our hope of sharing the glory of God. 3 And not only that, but we also boast in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, 4 and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, 5 and hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.” (Romans 5: 1-5)
Apostle Paul further states to us, “31 What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us,who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? 33 Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. 34 Who then is the one who condemns?No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? 36 As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.” 37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers,39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8: 31-39)
I have found that it is only when I am in a valley (times of persecutions, trials & tribulations)…that I grow even closer to God. For, it is him who I turn to for the direction, peace & comfort needed during these times. And, it is only him that can provide me with the direction, peace & comfort that I require & need…during such times. Now…don’t misunderstand. Going through these times of persecution can literally feel like “hell.” They can & will be the most trying times of your life. They will make you want to “holler,” “scream” & “shout,” all the time…everywhere you are. These times are no damn joke. And…I say that with the greatest of sincerity. The key is “faith.” The key is knowing that God is the one to lean on because He is the only one that can get you through it with…your mind intact, & your spirit intact. Now…for the most beautiful part.
If you survive the valley (times of persecutions, trials & tribulations)…because you have leaned on & into God…you will go to a whole other level with God. Meaning? You will be blessed by him with a whole new level of understanding of who He is and who you are in relationship to him. The battle that you two went through together, during your ordeals, will make you closer than ever with him. He says the closer you draw to him…the closer He will draw to you. Meaning? The gifts, revelations & wisdom that He gives to his children…will sky rocket to new heights for you. You will be blessed with powers beyond your belief. I kid you not…& He does not allow me to joke about such things. I am telling you the truth. In essence…You have become more Christ like.
So…While the Devil will be allowed to come against you…he will never prevail over you… when God is for you. And, God is for you…if you are for him. May you be blessed in the knowledge & wisdom of God.
Iris Whiting ©