Matthew 5:10 “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
- Brunson: When Persecution Comes — Take Seriously The Danger Of Becoming Offended At God
- During difficult times, a real danger for the Christian is to become offended at God. I struggled with this. In fact, I came close to losing my friendship with God. My imprisonment, the isolation, the loneliness, the fear that I would never be with my family again—all these were difficult, but I understood intellectually that this was persecution. I didn’t like it, but I understood it to some degree.
- Objectively, I can say God did not abandon me, but it felt and looked like He had. It was agony to my soul.
- I questioned God’s existence. Then I questioned His character.
- This is what Jesus warned about when He said that “the love of many will grow cold” (Matthew 24:12). Many will turn away because they become offended at God
- I made a decision with my will—not with my emotions—and said:
- “God, whatever You do or don’t do, I will follow You. If You do not let me sense Your presence, I will still follow You. If You don’t speak to me, I will still follow You. If You don’t show me Your gentleness or kindness, I will still follow You. If You leave me in prison, I will still follow You.”
- And He started to rebuild me.
- I had to make this decision again and again. Every time I was in a pit, at every setback, I chose to turn toward God rather than away from Him.
- The truth is, God tests His children. And one of the tests is overcoming offense.
- I think part of my testing was that I not have a sense of the presence of God, that I not have His voice. God wanted me to learn to stand in the dark, to lean into Him whatever my feelings, whatever my circumstances.
- Please, take seriously the danger of the offended heart. You must not allow offense to take root in your heart. Decide: “I will turn my eyes toward Jesus and not away.”
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