Monday, February 08, 2010

Francis Chan on Suffering in Ministry

The following is Francis Chan of Cornerstone Church in Simi Valley, CA thoughts on suffering from his talk at the Verge Conference:

Good ministry is full of suffering. Yet we are surprised when we suffer.
Do not be surprised when people persecute you 1 Peter 4:12. In fact, you should be concerned if people speak too well of you because that is how the false prophets were treated. At the end of the day, it is all about the Holy Spirit and what He has called you to do.

Jesus did not come to bring peace (Matthew 10). Blessed are you when people hate you because of Jesus (Luke 22). The world hated Jesus before it hated you (John 15). The apostles rejoiced at the opportunity to suffer for the cause of Christ (Acts 5). We are heirs of Christ provided that we suffer with Him (Romans 8). For the sake of Christ, you should not only believe in Him but suffer for Him (Philippians 1:29). Share in the suffering (2 Timothy 1:8). Let us bear the reproach that Christ endured (Hebrews 13:12).

If you are not suffering, there is a problem. Imagine how close you’d be with Jesus and how safe you would feel had you suffered alongside Him. Then you would know this is real.

You must learn to love people who betray you. The highest form of love is to love people who betray you.
If we really are serious about wanting Christ - to experience Christ, to know Him - we must be ready for suffering.

 HT: Kent Shaffer

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