Think about Apostle Paul’s life.
He was a member of the Sanhedrin and the ruling party, very powerful. He had the highest possible education and much that would bring him esteem, but then he gave his life to Christ. Immediately after his commission, Jesus said, “I will show him how many things he must suffer for My name’s sake” (Acts 9:16). Then, for 30 years, Paul was like a wounded animal: Everywhere he walked, he could see the drops of blood from opposition—yet he never stopped. He knew his destiny as a minister for Christ.
When the prophets in Acts 20 foretold that he was going to be beaten up, imprisoned and in peril for his life, for Paul it was a kind of confirmation. He knew what was coming, but he didn’t regard his life as dear to himself. All he wanted was to preach the Gospel in simple language.
The price you are to pay and I am to pay in obeying our Lord is to face real-life opposition. We don’t realize we’re enlisted into an army. Even with all the preaching, teaching, writing books and everything, I still may not fully grasp this. There are times I wish I could leave all this for someone else to do; I am old and tired!
We want to escape, find peace, find some rest. If you are going through trials and opposition, don’t think this is unusual! Welcome to the reality of your enlistment in His army. Here we are, recruited by the Lord. In His grace and mercy, He enlisted us. He could have chosen 10,000 other people, but He chose you.
Whatever battle I am dealing with, whether it is a difficult telephone call, a loved one’s hardship, or my own weaknesses, I need to understand it is not just accidental. This is not just normal life; these struggles are as powerful as real bullets. The spiritual battle is real, but God never abandons us or forsakes us; He is with us and will give us grace.
In communities throughout Asia and Africa, GFA World’s national missionaries have, like Apostle Paul, committed their lives to sharing the Gospel, many at great personal cost. May their lives inspire us all to persevere and continue to serve our Lord. He will grant you grace for whatever circumstance you find yourself in.