Hello my friends, it has been quite awhile since I wrote regularly on my blog. I must be honest and share the difficulties I have had in writing these past months; As I watched our world spin out of control, I was simply at a loss, my journal entries for 2-3 years ago suddenly seemed inappropriate and worse… irrelevant in these times.
How many times I attempted to sit down and write, and I just didn’t sense the Lord was with me nor did I sense He was even remotely speaking through me… so I waited and I prayed. I prayed that God would show me (as He did previously) what I was supposed to do.
If I was to continue to share my Journey with Jesus, what should that look like in light of a very different world? I knew how to write about the things Christ has done In our lives as I could easily see the past and present, but how to I write into a place where we do not know the outcome.
Over the months, many friends and followers reached out asking if I was still writing my blog, it was hard explaining my internal struggle, so I prayed that God would show me a way and help me know how to be an encouragement to so many that have similar internal struggles in our world today.
What God has shown me is what I will NOT do. I will not turn the platform He has given me into a political platform, regardless of my personal beliefs on the matter. He has been showing me that none of that really matters in the whole scheme of things.
So here is what He showed me that I should do; get back into His Word. To examine the world we live in and the changes we are going through and look at them under the light of His Word and the Holy Spirit inspired teachings. He has reminded me that absolutely everything we need is bound between the pages of Genesis through Revelation.
The book of Genesis starts with these 4 words; “In the beginning God…” and the book of Revelation ends with these;
The Spirit and the bride say, “Come.” Let anyone who hears this say, “Come.” Let anyone who is thirsty come. Let anyone who desires drink freely from the water of life. / And I solemnly declare to everyone who hears the words of prophecy written in this book: If anyone adds anything to what is written here, God will add to that person the plagues described in this book. / And if anyone removes any of the words from this book of prophecy, God will remove that person’s share in the tree of life and in the holy city that are described in this book. / He who is the faithful witness to all these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon!”Amen! Come, Lord Jesus! / May the grace of the Lord Jesus be with God’s holy people. Rev. 22: 17-21 NLT
The Word starts and Ends with God… it is full and complete, nothing missing, all our answers to life are contained within. So I will attempt to write about the ways God Word teaches us to live because I don’t believe life will ever go back to what it was, and I don’t believe this is our new normal either… I believe change is in the air, we just need to know how to live in that change… I welcome you to continue to Journey for Jesus with me and let’s learn how to live for Christ together.
Jan 1, 2022
As I read these words that Peter wrote for how believers in Christ should be living, I can’t help but wonder how often I have failed during these last 21 months, as our world was suddenly thrown into fear and chaos. Lockdowns, isolation and mandates were the constant words of the day and remain so today almost two years later.
Have I Lord, been of one mind with other believers? What has the unbelieving world seen within the Christian community during this period of testing? Even how we choose to experience our life varies widely, are we being tested or refined? Tested would indicate we have no control in the outcome, while the refining process although difficult will prove to bring out the beauty later.
Lord Jesus, I pray that you would be refining me to serve you better in the coming days.
Thank you Lord for opening my eyes to recognize some truths in this passage, that when Peter penned these words to believers in Asia Minor, he was speaking to people that lived in a time where following Christ was not only unacceptable or foolish to most, the probability of persecution was to actually be expected.
This was a time of ridicule for followers as well as physical harm…even death, for simply believing the good news of Jesus Christ. O Lord, how difficult that journey would have been for these early believers. As I fast forward over 2000 years to our present time, your Gospel of good news has gone around the world. Depending on their location, the persecution of your Church varies widely.
In many regions of the Middle East, Africa & Asia, one could be marked as a traitor and modern day persecution may continue to mean torture and or death. In many European countries the Gospel is all but obsolete, and one might be ridiculed for continuing to believe in such “fairy tales”. While in North America (particularly USA and Canada), our Countries were originally built upon Christian principles and we could live out of faith in freedom without the need to defend it.
Yet Lord, it has quickly become apparent that our world is changing faster than we can even keep up, regardless of where we live we are seeing persecution to believers growing…even here in the countries that were founded on it.
As I pray today, I am reminded of two Christians being murdered while singing Christmas Carols in Africa, as well of news articles coming out of China where Christian literature, thoughts & comments will become illegal in just a couple of months (unless they are the approved socialist state propaganda). Even at home here in Canada, government mandates are dividing Churches telling the Church who is allowed to enter and who is not… this is a good time Lord to remember that the Church are your people, not the building they meet in.
Suddenly, Peters words on Christian living have taken on a new light in my heart and mind. As your children, we cry out and ask You how we are to live out the light of the Gospel message in these times… do we follow the ways of the world and jump on the wave of the world or do we prepare for persecution in order to stay true to you and the freedom of the Gospel that ALL are welcome, and that You are actively seeking ALL to come to the saving grace of Christ.
Lord God, I thank You for Your Word, everything we need is in Your Word to follow You. Your Word tells us to “be of one mind (in Christ)”, that we should have sympathy and tender hearts to other believers. Lord this implies that we will not always agree on how to proceed, yet we are to respond in loving ways to each other as brothers & sisters of Christ.
Your Word tells us how to respond when others say unkind things about us, thereby insulting You Lord. You tell us NOT to retaliate but to show love, and to go even further in blessing those who desire to hurt us. You even go another step further Lord, to remind us that You see us and how we treat others, that there is even a reward in that… that if we respond in Christ-like Love you will hear our prayers. Yet, it also warns that if we respond in hateful and divisive ways, that You will turn Your face away from us. Help me to choose the path of Christ.
Lord God, teach me and lead me to always respond in loving kindness when others disagree with my thoughts or actions. Help me to Love those that I might disagree with and prepare each of us to stand firm in the face of persecution in an ever changing world… whatever that persecution might look like.
And Finally, thank You Lord for reminding me that “its better to suffer for doing good, if that is what You want, then to suffer for doing wrong”. 1Peter 3:17 NLT
If you’ve made it here, I hope that means that the journey continues… Gods plans are always perfect and although we can’t always see or understand, we know with certainty that He is always for us, His children. We know this because His Word tells us that we are adopted heirs of God, that Jesus himself refers to us as brothers & sisters… how’s that for encouragement? It definitely makes my heart swell.
Yes, the world may get difficult, we may all face times of persecution in the coming days…months…years. But we have so many incredible promises to hold onto that will help guide us each and every day.
I hope and pray that you will continue allowing me to walk this journey with you and maybe together we can learn how to be the Brothers & Sisters of Christ.
Blessings ❤️ Janet
Do you know Jesus? He’s waiting for you…