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Saturday/Sunday: June 11, 2019


“Do not think that I have come to bring peace on the earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.” (Matthew 10:34)

All of us are vulnerable to blind spots. We must constantly be on the lookout, lest we depart the path of righteousness (Proverbs 1). When we read Jesus’ words: “Do not think that I have come to bring peace on earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword” we can think, “what about the message of Christmas? What about “love, joy and peace?”

One of the blindspots in most churches today is we do not think loving God will bring hardship. We often skip biblical passages where obedience will result in suffering.

“Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it” (Matthew 10:37-39).

Hardship followed the life of the Apostle John “the disciple who Jesus loved” (John 13:23). John wrote the book of Revelation from “the island called Patmos on account of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus” (Revelation 1:9). What type of people lived on this island? Commentators agree the island was a Roman penal settlement for those considered dangerous to good order.

When difficult times come, we must remember that loving God will not always result in comfort. God’s providence for his children is often marked with suffering, difficulty, and division. For we are his ambassadors, whose word is “sharper than a two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and spirit, of joints and marrow” (Hebrews 4:12a).

Question: Does loving God seem incompatible with hardship?

Challenge: Trust God to carry you through difficult circumstances which are a result of obedience to Christ.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, help me to find my joy and rest in obeying you at all times.

Jonathan Agudelo, Chapel Leader -- Toronto Blue Jays

Baseball Chapel
P.O. Box 10102
Largo, FL 33773

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