I receive a magazine every couple months or so which deals with the issue of Christians who are being persecuted, tortured and killed because they are Christians. They stand up for Jesus Christ as their Savior and it has cost many of them their lives.
These stories bring such sadness to my heart. It is hard to imagine how other people can treat Christians this way. I mean, I read it, I see pictures and still it is hard to understand how this happens. How can human beings do this to other human beings?
This questioning brought me to two of my dearest friends ~ How can I, how can we, know that we would be able to stand up for Jesus when faced with imprisonment, torture and/or death? It is such a hard thing to imagine. We all love Jesus and we say we will stand up for Him no matter what. . .
In the United States we have not had to deal with another religion telling us that we must convert to their way under penalty of prison, torture or death. We may have had some minor persecutions as Catholics – and I say minor in terms of not being beaten or killed for our belief, because I don’t want Mr. Donahue of the Catholic League coming back at me telling me that we have been persecuted as Catholics, because we haven’t when compared to what is happening in the third world today.
So, I think of them and I pray for them and I ask God to help us all live more authentic lives as followers of Christ.
My thoughts also take me back even farther. . .to the days Jesus walked this earth. Would I have followed Him? Can I believe that perhaps I, like the woman who reached out with all courage and faith, touch the hem of His garment and hear the words, “woman, your faith has saved you”?
I would like to think that I would have followed Him. But I suppose the question at hand right now is, do I follow Him with all sincerity now, right here where I live???
I need to go, bow down and pray with thankfulness and gratitude to God for this faith that keeps me coming back, coming back to Jesus.
Ask yourself, do you follow Him right here, right now???
Sandy Ozanich ~ Copyright 2012