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In America we often hear some version of the following: "Your life will be much better as a Christian. You'll have fewer problems, a happier outlook and be more blessed with the comforts of life you need."
What if this wasn't true? In fact, what if being a Christ-follower meant persecution? What if it meant being outcast from friends and family, living in fear of personal harm, or losing the comforts of life? The Bible confirms throughout the New Testament that the life of a Christ-follower will often not be one of happiness, but suffering.
It might be tough to hear, but sometimes it is in our suffering that God is really glorified. Think about it--if life is really tough, and we still acknowledge God and our faith grows in the midst of difficult times, then He gets the glory for our actions. After all, it's easy to say, "God is faithful" when things are going great. It's harder to believe when things are not. If you want to know more about honoring God through suffering, read the book of Job.
Imagine living in a place where you were not free to study and discuss the Bible openly. Where faith in Christ and belief in the teachings of the Bible were not only discouraged, but actually dangerous. How committed would you be to God's Word and ways in a place like this, where your beliefs could threaten your home, your family, even your life?
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