Thursday, April 30, 2009
For we which live are alway delivered unto death for Jesus' sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh. 2 Corinthians 4:11
Lately I've been reading quite a bit about the lives of saints who suffered for their faith. Some of these sufferings were severe. Currently, I'm three quarters of the way through a book about the life of a brother in China. It's unbelievable the extent of the persecution that this man went through. And today during devotions, I read one of the short daily bio sketches in this book, The One Year Christian History. The glimpse I read today was about a believer in Bulgaria, another one who was tortured for his faith. I encourage you to get this book and read about the many lives, some by their shed blood, who are testimonies of the gospel worldwide. I promise you that you won't be sorry.
Of course, reading about people like Charles Spurgeon and Billy Graham are great encouragements, but I also think its important to reflect on the lives and trials of many who are little known to us. For they certainly are not little known to the God for whom they gave their lives, some literally. Needless to say, they will and should spur us on. Many of us who have it easy don't want things to get too difficult for us. Please don't let living the Christian life cause us too much discomfort or get in the way of us having and doing the things we want. I have a great remedy which I hope will help all of us: Ponder the stripes and chains of those who've gone before. This book will help you to do that.