Thursday, August 15, 2013

Despicable You

Luke 6:22-23 (AMP) - "Blessed (happy—with life-joy and satisfaction in God's favor and salvation, apart from your outward condition—and to be envied) are you when people despise (hate) you, and when they exclude and excommunicate you [as disreputable] and revile and denounce you and defame and cast out and spurn your name as evil (wicked) on account of the Son of Man. 23 Rejoice and be glad at such a time and exult and leap for joy, for behold, your reward is rich and great and strong and intense and abundant in heaven; for even so their forefathers treated the prophets."

I figured I'd put the Scripture up front this morning.

If your normal (or slightly abnormal like me *chuckle*) then the Word has just spoken to you.

And that's a good thing.

I hope you're not actually hated this morning, and in fact I would submit that probably few of you are.

A lot more of us would fit into the category of suffering "reproach".

Somebody is probably dissatisfied with you. Or blaming you. Or discrediting you. Or dissapproving of you. Or rebuking you. Or excluding you (the separation from their company).

That's tough enough to deal with. You could actually suffer with it.

Did you know however, that when this occurs for the believer Jesus says it is a means of blessing?

A means of blessing is a means of grace. A means of grace is a means of peace, rejoicing, and joy.

I know, I know, it seems a bit far fetched, but that's what makes the Word supernatural.

In the natural you want to break down and cry. Or lash out. Or get revenge.

In the supernatural you recognize that the grace is there to deal with it all, and that translates out as blessing and rejoicing.

Picture yourself leaping through the house shouting praises to God because so and so hates your guts! 

Well, not usually, even for the most spiritually mature.

However, it could be a more subdued, less strenuous form of that.

How about a quietness in your spirit that all is well. That your joy and peace of mind and heart is not contingent upon what others think?

That works well for me, and most people I know.

Speaking personally, if I was to take to heart every person that ever disagreed with me, or rebuked me, or disproved me, and even disapproved of me, I'd have been run out of the ministry many years ago. Not to mention the loneliness at times. The "separation from the company" of friends, family, and yes, sometimes even the sheep of the flock. Pastors and their families have to learn to deal with that. We are often viewed by some (and often erroneously) as the "wet blanket" at the party. It comes with the territory of the gospel. Jesus said, "They hated Me, they will also hate you."

I learned long ago to identify this "blessing" Jesus speaks of, and receive it to myself as truth.

I can deal with everything as long as I know that Jesus loves me and blesses me.

Paul says in Romans 8:31, "What then shall we say to all this? If God is for us, who can be against us? Who can be our foe, if God is on our side?"

There you have it. In these stressful times of disagreement with others, perhaps even being hated or despised, you are faced with the challenge of reacting in your own flesh, or believing Jesus.

Make no mistake. It is every bit a challenge of the highest degree.

But God is on our side. 

This is why I say...

Before they can get to you, they have to go through Jesus first!

My prayer for you today is that you listen first to Jesus before you listen to others. That you allow everything to be filtered through Him, so that by the time it gets to your eyes or ears it will have been soaked with love and anointed blessing!

Be blessed and rejoice this morning because your reward is great!

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

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