Today I want to look at another command where Jesus tells us to rejoice. However, as I look at the context I find that some things need to to be done prior to you even having the opportunity to follow this statement. To be persecuted for His sake, we must be open to share our faith and live out our faith with those around us.
Matthew 5:11-12 (NKJV)
11 “Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. 12 Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
Remember when Peter said he would go with Jesus only to realize he would deny him 3 times before the rooster crowed. Question: Would you be willing to die for your faith in Christ? Yes, No? If you answered yes, I’d like to ask a follow up question…Would you be willing to go up to the door of a nearby neighbor you’ve never met, and share just how much Jesus loves them? I confess, I struggle with this. Why? It’s fear, the Idol that I have put over the one true God. I am in a place of repentance, changing my mind on how I see this, and asking God’s help in transforming my way of thinking. I need to be thinking less of how they may take it in a negative way and focus more of why I’d want to share that with them – because Jesus loves them also, and I am to love them as well…
I believe many would agree with me that the second question would be very easy to accomplish when compared to the first, yet so many of us struggle with complete surrender. Lord help us.
I believe this command, the command to rejoice, would be something that would come natural from the blessing poured upon us when we are persecuted for our faith – as we continue standing firm in our faith. Maybe not in that moment, but when you live a life we’re you are continually knocking on Heaven’s door Jesus will answer.