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Monday, February 3, 2014

Would I Stand Up?

Standing up for Jesus. Would I do that in ALL circumstances? That question came up a week ago in our Sunday morning Community Group (Sunday School) and most of us couldn't answer for sure. We all knew what we would like to do or say, but how brave are we really? In a non-threatening experience, most of us said, absolutely we would stand for Jesus. How brave would we be with a knife at our throat, or a gun to our head. Again we all knew what we thought we might do, after all, if we lost our life, we would be with Jesus. That's a win, win. What if our spouse, or our children were the ones being threatened? That might be a different thing. Would we stand up for Jesus if their lives were on the line?

We then thought about all the missionaries in countries that hate Christians. They are in danger every day. One Pastor is in prison and is beaten and tortured, and probably starved, yet he will not give in and denounce Jesus. A young teen girl some years ago was confronted by a school shooter. When she openly said she was a Christian, she was shot and killed on the spot. I would bet most of us could be brave enough if killed quickly, but what would we do if tortured. I admit it, I am a coward when it comes to pain. If you could think in a split  second about the torture and pain Jesus went through for you, would that be enough to help you through a Jesus or die moment? 

We humans in our skin suits don't all handle pain the same. I handle my RA pain for the most part, but sometimes it makes me cry. That pain is not the same as nerve pain, or child birth pain, or surgery pain. Humanly it is possible to get through it, but I can not do it on my own. Many nights, I have alternated prayer and tears, and morning does come, and eventually the pain subsides. I can not say what I would do under extreme torture. Those who torture are living in a dark world, and have no regard for human life or suffering, so I can only imagine how intense that kind of pain is. Also does my loyalty to my Lord and Savior depend solely on my pain threshold? 

These are questions we may never be able to answer. I know that if a quick gunshot ended my life, I could be brave. I have had a gun pointed at me in a robbery, and I did not fall apart. I know that My  heart's desire would be to stand for Jesus no matter what.....but I don't know. I can and will defend Him and my belief verbally every time, and I am not afraid of instant death, but that pain thing is such an unknown. I do know that only Jesus could help me through it, and I do know I might react differently if a family member was being hurt in front of me. If I truly love and serve Jesus, and I do, there should be no difference in circumstances.....right?  Again only Jesus could get me through, guiding me as to what I should do. I, as in all other areas just need to be obedient. It is a matter of trust. If He ever puts me in that situation, then I have to trust He will honor that and take care of me and my loved ones. When He asked Abraham to sacrifice his son, Abraham was obedient, and last minute, God provided and Issac was saved.  He will do no less for me. Like I said, I may never have to make that drastic a stand, you may not have to either, but do we trust Jesus with our very life, our pain, our family to stand up for Him? For now, day by day, I will proclaim Him as my Savior wherever I am. He has done so much for me, I have to tell others of His Grace and His love, whether it's popular or not. Yes....I will Stand For Jesus!  But....I will pray it doesn't hurt me beyond endurance!