1 Peter 4:12-14
12 Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you:
13 But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.
14 If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified.
This morning, I was listening to Andrew's homeschooling DVD with him and this verse was being discussed in his Bible Class.
With all of the Christian bashing, the political correct Gay Marriage happenings, the threat to preachers of hate-crime preaching, etc., this verse speaks to the attitude that we must have. We are definitely approaching days of discrimination and probably persecution as Bible-standing Christians.
Some Christians are not handling this well. They love their country and are terribly upset that we are going this direction. It is true that we must stand very vocally against the sins of our country; however, to live "upset" each day is not right. The Lord told us that these days would come and that we should "rejoice" that we are partakers of Christ's sufferings. We are looked down upon because we identify with Christ, His Word, for God's truth.
Another aspect of this is the President Obama bashing that I hear from the mouths of believers. For one thing, just because he is President does not mean that he is personally responsible for ALL LIBERAL AGENDAS right now. For another - bashing your government is sinful. In II Peter 2 we are told of False Teachers that they would despise government. Also, God reasons there that even the angels do not bring accusations against dignities (government leaders), yet false teachers would bash them openly. We must not act like these false teachers. We can stand against sin without ugly words toward our President. God ordained that man and the angels won't speak against him - who are you to bash God's ordained?
I ask you to consider the right attitude in these days. As a Pastor, I must find the ground where I can stand for the things of the Lord with the right attitude from the pulpit. I must be serious and vocal against the sin of our country, but within my heart rejoicing that we are suffering for the cause of Jesus. The I Peter passage above says that God is glorified when I happily suffer. Will you glorify the Lord this way and refuse to allow the terrible sins of our country to rob your happiness to be identified with Christ?