For the true and faithful believer, the Christian life is love, peace, rest, joy and enlightenment. It is exciting and rewarding and is all that God promises and much more. No one who has experienced this personal relationship with the Lord would willingly give it up, often not even in the face of death.

There is, however, another side of this Christian life that we must all be aware of and that is, “All that will live Godly in Christ Jesus, shall suffer persecution” (11 Timothy 3:12). That leaves no one out! We often think that Christians suffer in many places around the world but fortunately we don’t have to here. But suffering is not just the threat of death or bodily harm. It very well may be the loss of friends, family and rejection of others in the work place and even those in the church we attend. In fact it will likely be there. Scripture says that if you TRULY believe and follow the leading of the Holy Spirit you will suffer . . . and if you are not suffering it may mean that you are not really following Christ. Are we making a stand for what is right? Are we refusing to allow the evil of this world into our lives and families? Do our lives reflect His Truth even if we don’t say anything? Because if you follow these imperatives that the Lord has given us you will suffer rejection at the hands of those around you as Christ suffered when He was on earth.

Immediately after describing the true believer in Matthew chapter five (the beatitudes) Christ said “You are the salt of the earth”. But often we act as the ‘sugar’ of the earth, all compromise, sweet talk, live and let live, don’t make waves and accept every belief no matter what it stands for. We all know that too much sugar in our system causes disease. Salt, on the other hand, heals and at the same time is an irritant . . . thus the cause of suffering. But it is absolutely necessary for it preserves, which is exactly what the true Christian believer has done for man since the beginning. If we are not suffering we must ask ourselves if we are salt or sugar . . . because Christ said if we follow Him we will suffer.

The cross that He gave may be heavy,
But it ne’er out-weighs His grace,
The storm that I feared may surround me,
But it never excludes His face . . . (The Cross is not Greater)