Why do we meet up with those who like to give us a hard time ... in little or big ways?
Go back into your younger days (childhood) Do you recall mom, dad or both saying things like "don't get pulled down to that level that a friend was about?' This life is a test of faith? There's book smart and then there is the applying of the book to life itself.
REJOICE when man(kind) persecutes you says the GOOD BOOK.
As a child; we question it... REJOICE WHEN OTHERS GIVE US A HARD TIME?? It's hard to understand ... unless we SEE WITH EYES OF FAITH ...
ALL THE GOOD that we received in our younger years: the holiday gathering time with the family, the laughter, the birthdays, the accomplishment of grammar school graduation, high school graduation, if we were brought up in a certain faith tradition, we ourselves ere baptized, received Holy Communion and subsequent Holy communions we were confirmed to being adult Christians (as adolescents) and in the early years; it's all running smooth...the feasting, the family, the friends in our small social circle, the first job and paycheck and the independence of having such. (even if not Christian per se....if any are in this understanding of God...early life is fund and carefree... but I speak specifically today, of Christian faith living... IN THE EARLY YEARS...we are running well: good health, good family, fun days, we are loved, they laugh with us not at us... IT'S WONDERFUL...
We could call this the PALM SUNDAY Christianity... who would not love it.
THEN ... something changes...The cheers from others stop, they don't laugh with us anymore, they aren't thrilled to see us coming, they ... almost seem to 'fear' us or is that envy? if we know RIGHT FROM WRONG...BY his grace to our lives; THIS DAY was bound to come. This is THE TRUE TEST OF OUR FAITH... "what good is it to be loved only" ANYONE can do that. GOD deems us worth OF THE CROSS CARRYING part of the journey upward. Can we LOVE HIM... and lean on HIS WAY when they stop laughing with us, when joy isn't there, when others do seem to want to find any type of fault with us, trip us up... ?? GOD DEEMED ME WORTHY OF HIMSELF... who carried a cross 'with love...
REJOICE...we are on the road to FULL MATURITY OF SPIRIT... We by grace know how it should go, the right and wrong actions... THEY DON'T KNOW. This one ...as the saying has been said: this one: there but for the grace of God ...GO I. Should we just 'take it' ... YES AND NO... We take it AS FURTHER GRACE from our Lord...to take it and OFFER IT UP... gaining His merit who TOOK IT ALL upon Himself. The difference is ...WE TAKE IT... WITH HIS LIFE PART OF US... so; we have the supernatural strength... to handle any difficulty or person. Not a hair on our head will be harmed.
We take it ... and OFFER IT UP for (our enemy) PRAY FOR THEM... what GOD THEN DECIDES to do; is up to God... and when its time He will move us up from this temporary moment 'higher up' (as we moved thru grade school and high school and graduated... we will 'graduate' from THIS TEST of FAITH IN HIS WAY... and rise above these of a lower way of living life...
IT'S ALL ONE TEST AFTER ANOTHER TEST ... to full maturity of spirit ... growth of wisdom and stature with God and GOOD mankind. ADULT RESPECT.
Keep the faith and do not grow weary of doing good.
Pray for your 'enemies' ... that in time...GOD WILL SHOW THEM THE SAME MERCY HE SHOWED TO YOU... and one day... they too will be in the WHOLENESS of the eternal realm.
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