Facing Trials: Will you respond with fear or faith?
“Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted…”
2 Timothy 3:12
Was there a time in your life when you halfheartedly followed the Lord? Perhaps just going through the motions, but not fully committed to him? Have you noticed that it is during those times you seldom receive push back from the world? Perhaps it’s because you may not be considered much of a threat to the enemy and his plan. But then something happens: an inspiring teaching or conference. Possibly a particular scripture verse struck a chord that changed your direction and outlook. Whatever it was, your relationship with Jesus suddenly became front and center.
Then, as if on cue, you are thrown right into the midst of a fiery trial. Suddenly, conflict breaks out with your family or at your job. Or a strong temptation pops up unexpectedly. Maybe you receive devastating news from the doctor. Now, your newfound commitment to the Lord is called into question: will you respond with faith or fear? Will you continue in the kingdom work God has called you to do or will you slide back into complacency?
After attending a recent regional NAIC conference, Pastor Deepak was challenged and inspired to move from halfhearted obedience to a committed follower of Jesus and builder of his kingdom. Soon after, intense physical persecution ensued and he was faced with the same question: would he continue in obedience or would he turn back to complacency?
“Before attending [the monthly conference], I was not faithful in doing ministry. I used to preach and teach about Christ only when I felt like doing so, without proper commitment. After attending the monthly meeting, the theme of the year, ‘Embracing the vision’ challenged me. I was really moved by the Holy Spirit and began doing ministry with faithful commitment. Because of this I was beaten up by six [radicals] while preaching the Gospel in a [remote] village. They beat me ‘till I lost consciousness. When I awoke, I asked for water. Instead, the men decided to urinate in my mouth. Even though I did not press charges, the police department took action. They are now in prison. I really do thank God and the other pastors for praying and upholding me. I thank God for the training and motivation I have received.”
Will you join us in praying for Pastor Deepak and the hundreds of other faithful servants who face these trials regularly?