March 25, 2019 – Matthew 5:11-12

“God blesses you when people mock you and persecute you and lie about you and say all sorts of evil things against you because you are my followers. Be happy about it! Be very glad! For a great reward awaits you in heaven. And remember, the ancient prophets were persecuted in the same way.” Matthew 5:11-12.

How can this be, to find God’s blessings while under siege for faithfulness to God?  Because this world is not all there is.  There is much more. Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning. Proverbs 30:5.

Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing. James 1:2-4.

How can this be?  The pure love that we have from God, through Jesus, caused caused our Lord tears, heartache, and physical pain.  His love surpassed the cross, when Jesus rose from the dead.  Our hope is built on the resurrection of Jesus.  He made the Way for us to enjoy the blessings of Loving our enemies and praying for them.

 But even if you suffer for doing what is right, God will reward you for it. So don’t worry or be afraid of their threats.  Instead, you must worship Christ as Lord of your life. And if someone asks about your hope as a believer, always be ready to explain it.  I Peter 3:14-15.

Let all that I am wait quietly before God, for my hope is in Him.  Psalm 62:5.

“You have heard the law that says, ‘Love your neighbor’ and hate your enemy. But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you!” Matthew 5:43-44.