Moving throughout the day we choose what we want for lunch, pick a spot to eat and accomplish nearly all we intend without so much as a slow internet connection to wrestle with.
We come home to dinner, sports, children's activities, and a host of other commitments. We thank the Lord for our food but our prayer seems rote and dry, "Lord, bless this food we are about to eat and thank you that we all have had a good day. Watch over us tonight and help us love you more, Amen." Every night. Same thing. What's missing?
Picture this if you will, you are a pastor of a thriving church in a relatively large city. God is doing some amazing things among the community of believers whom you shepherd. People are being changed from the inside out, the Spirit is on the move. Then, one morning you come to these seemingly obscure passages in the Bible:
- Acts 5:41 "Then they left the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name."
- John 15:21 "But all these things they will do to you on account of my name, because they do not know him who sent me."
- I Peter 4:14 "If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you."
A brief survey of your congregation reveals that growth is the result of such persecution. "What do you mean growth?" Watch the video (again if you haven't already).