While I do think there are degrees of persecution, and as of yet no one in this country is being threatened by systematic enslavement and beheading such as Christians in the Middle East are experiencing daily at the hands of ISIS, still, there is a rapidly growing antagonism in the U.S. to Christian religious expression. Stories of Christians losing their jobs for expressing their deeply held religious convictions, being attacked in the streets, spit upon, cursed, and reviled, and this kind of blind hate, flow across my feed on a daily basis. Today it brought to mind this passage:
1 Peter 4:12-19 New Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition (NRSVCE)
Suffering as a Christian
12 Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that is taking place among you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. 13 But rejoice insofar as you are sharing Christ’s sufferings, so that you may also be glad and shout for joy when his glory is revealed. 14 If you are reviled for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the spirit of glory,[e] which is the Spirit of God, is resting on you.[f] 15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer, a thief, a criminal, or even as a mischief maker. 16 Yet if any of you suffers as a Christian, do not consider it a disgrace, but glorify God because you bear this name.17 For the time has come for judgment to begin with the household of God; if it begins with us, what will be the end for those who do not obey the gospel of God? 18 And
what will become of the ungodly and the sinners?”
19 Therefore, let those suffering in accordance with God’s will entrust themselves to a faithful Creator, while continuing to do good.
We should prepare ourselves for what is to come. This is truly a post-Christian society. “Do not be surprised!” May we draw closer to our Blessed Lord, and join our sufferings, whether large or small, with His, and to His glory.
- 4th of July Weekend – Saturday Around the Ranch
- The Big One-Niner