Friday, August 27, 2010

Knowing God - 1 Peter 4:13

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rejoice that you participate
in the sufferings of Christ,
so that ...
1 Peter 4:13
 
You probably notice that I give you a lot of half verses. Why? Sometimes a half-verse gives us more than a full point. Other times, half a verse invites you to think. So today, fill in the blank! "Rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that ..."
 
Hmm. If "rejoice" weren’t the first word, I’d say that participating in Christ’s sufferings, would be more a "lament." Perhaps at best, it’s a "solemn honor" – like the solemn honor of the tens of thousands who are martyred each year in defense of the faith. But "rejoice"?
 
Here’s why. The sufferings of Jesus led to a painful but permanent victory – the conquering of sin and death. But joy had to wait for three days. Suffering led to victory which led to resurrected glory! And when we involve ourselves with Christ through all the ups and downs of life, that is when we can fill in the blank and -- to finish the verse -- "be overjoyed when his glory is revealed."
 
In Christ’s Love,
a guy who’s willing to suffer
for even greater joy

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Speak gently. carefully. thoughtfully. graciously. humbly.

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