So, my sanctification is a process. I am saved and justified before the Father once I have believed that Jesus died for my sins. But my sanctification is an ongoing process. The Spirit within me is the one sanctifying me, teaching me and warning me and convicting me when I have done wrong. So why I do I feel like I have stagnated in my sanctification process?
When we face persecution for our faith in Christ and suffer for our beliefs, we have a choice to make, I suppose. We can either accept the persecution as part of our sanctification process or we can take our faith and roll it hurriedly into a little ball and shove it in a closet somewhere. I am not sure what I would do since I have not really faced anything that can be considered real persecution in my life. But then again, have I ever truly be in a spot where I would face persecution, true persecution?
I am not talking about an argument or discussion about what I believe. I am talking about real abuse, like what the apostles faced. Would I be praising God if I was whipped or beaten with rods for the sake of my faith in Christ? Do I consider myself worthy to suffer for the Gospel? How would I be if I dropped in a Muslim country that forbids Christianity and got arrested? Would that I could in that moment rely on the strength that Jesus promises.
We have it easy here in the U.S. We are not persecuted for our faith. But we are not as respected as we once were either. The time is coming when we will find ourselves on the other side of the bars. I pray that I am strong.