Scripture: After recalling the apostles, they had them flogged, ordered them to stop speaking in the name of Jesus, and dismissed them. So they left the presence of the Sanhedrin, rejoicing that they had been found worthy to suffer dishonor for the sake of the name. (Acts 5:40-41)
Observation: Yesterday morning, I was feeling unworthy to call myself a Christian. I fall prey to my sinfulness too much to deserve to be called a Christian, or even a follower of Christ. Yet, given my position in life on this world, maybe the duality of my life is exactly what I am being asked to suffer in order to give glory to God every time I turn back to him. I suffer the dishonor of my sinfulness because of the fact that I call myself a Christian, and if I chose to not follow Christ, there would be no dishonor in my sin because sin is an accepted part of human nature.
Application: I will try and see every temptation to sin in the light of the fact that I am called to be a disciple of Jesus, but I will know that as long as I am plugged into this world, I will have to suffer the dishonor of my sinfulness. If I can see my sinfulness with a grateful heart, then the dispair and defeat that usually follows sin and comes from the evil one will not be allowed in.
Prayer: Lord, in order to see my sinful nature as a part of the suffering that I must suffer in order to bring you glory when I turn back to you, please supply me with enough grace to have the faith to know that it will not always be this way and that you have great plans for me. I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.