“They gave our Master a crown of thorns. Why do we hope for a crown of roses?”
~ Martin Luther ~
The New Testament does not paint a rosy picture for the Christian life on this Earth. Instead it assures us that if we follow Christ we will face trials and persecutions. Because we are identified with Christ we will receive much of the same bad treatment and rejection He received.
II Timothy 3:12 ~ Indeed, all who desire to live a Godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted.
I Peter 4:12 ~ Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed.
In our Women’s Bible Study today we talked about suffering, trials, persecution. We’re studying Philippians and Joy in everything seems to be the theme so Joy in suffering was discussed.
James 1:2-4 ~ Count it all joy my brothers when you meet trials of various kinds for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have it full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.
The trials are inevitable. How will I react? How should I behave in the midst of these trials? Will I choose joy trusting in Almighty God and His plans and purposes? I hope so. I want to experience steadfastness. I want to rejoice and be glad when Christ’s glory is revealed. I choose to trust that God will teach me in and during my trials to react and behave in a way that let’s steadfastness have its full effect bringing me homeward towards perfection and completeness, lacking nothing. I don’t want a crown of roses now, I want a crown of life so when I get to heaven I can cast it at Jesus’ feet…