Suffering Church .....
by 1/25/2008 / Christian Living
"And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it".. 1 Corinthians 12 v 26
Two words came softly and audibly this morning from the Lord 'suffering church'.
This answered not only my own personal prayers but also the Lord laid bare His heart, His grief for His church of which I am and many others are members.
I also received this morning 'Open Doors' communication. It is an organisation which effectively work with persecuted Christians throughout the world both in prayer, financial help and comfort too. It was lovely to open the pages and see prayers which I had prayed answered. In particular of a lady now free from prison and another gentleman who has been encouraged and upheld by this lady now free.
Many Christians throughout the world may not be in a physical prison but I felt this morning that the Lord knows your suffering. You are not forgotten. Just as God trusted me with a handful of persecuted Christians to write and pray for, God also lays on other Christians hearts your life, which is important to Him. You may not even be aware that people are praying for you but Jesus is our Great Intercessor.
"I pray for them, I pray not for the world, but for them which thou hast given me; for they are thine".. John 17 v 9
"Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word". John 17 v 19
I don't know about you but I know in my heart when I have neglected prayer or reading Gods Word. I find I have nothing to give. I know that my words will not bring life only Gods Word can do that.
There are many temptations and distractions today just as Jesus faced when He was in the wilderness. But here in the wilderness Jesus speaks such wisdom and gives us plainly how we ought to live.
"It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeded out of the mouth of God" .. Matthew 4 v 4
We must stay connected to the body of Christ for without it we are lost. We must stay tuned to His Word for without it there is no life at all. We must stay silent until God wants us to speak what He wants to speak. Our answers are from above not from this earth and must not include worthless philosophies or debates.
When Jesus was accused before Pilate His words were few but when He spoke you could not argue with the Truth and neither could Pilate. But it was Gods will that Jesus be taken and crucified and it is to our detriment if we choose not to follow Him.
As part of the Body of Christ we must eat of Him, drink of Him and most of all listen to His words for they bring life. Be careful you do not eat from the wrong tree, the Angel of Light comes in many disguises and what seems right at the time could well lead to death.
Our sufferings for Christ is part of the fruit of the spirit 'long-suffering' and one which many shy away from. But to partake of sufferings is in fact to partake of Jesus himself. As Paul discovered
"For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us".. Romans 8 v 18
The blessings and the Joy of the Lord of from knowing Him alone without Him we are nothing. The knowledge is that there is a mansion ready and waiting for those who follow Jesus and His promise is that He will never leave you nor forsake you and will be with you until the end of the age.
"He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful". Matthew 13 v 22