Happy Thursday! I am blessed to be a part of a group of bloggers who feel led to share a bit of encouragement each week from the Bible. We recognize our daily need for Christ and we aim to share that with our readers. Plus, when Thursday comes around, we can all use a little encouragement right? I hope that this post blesses you and that you find comfort, strength, and peace in the Lord today ❤
Last year I was introduced to Secret Church, which is an annual event hosted by Pastor David Platt. In many countries across the world, Christianity is illegal. Someone who admits to becoming a Christian could be jailed, beaten, or even killed for their faith. Sharing the gospel could literally mean a death sentence. Each year there is a different country chosen to be highlighted and prayed for. At one point during the night there is an offering taken to help send aid to missionaries in those countries. The night lasts between 6 and 7 hours. The majority of the night is spent listening to Pastor David Platt teaching on a specific topic but there are also times of prayer and a few rest breaks. Seven hours may seem like a long time, but the night really does go fast.
This year’s topic was on Prayer, Fasting, and the Pursuit of God. In just under 7 hours, the teachings took us all the way from Genesis to Revelation. If you’ve ever heard David Platt speak, you may already know that his voice sounds like it’s stuck on fast-forward. He talks incredibly fast but packs a whole lot of truth into a little bit of time. I don’t remember how long he said it will be available, but you can still watch this year’s simulcast off of the website http://secretchurch.radical.net/ I attended the simulcast at my church. There was a small fee for the event that included study books, but I’m not sure about the cost to watch online afterward. Next year’s event has already been announced as April 24, 2020 with the topic God, Government, and the Gospel.
16 “I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves. 17 Be on your guard; you will be handed over to the local councils and be flogged in the synagogues. 18 On my account you will be brought before governors and kings as witnesses to them and to the Gentiles. 19 But when they arrest you, do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time you will be given what to say, 20 for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.
21 “Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child; children will rebel against their parents and have them put to death. 22 You will be hated by everyone because of me, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved. 23 When you are persecuted in one place, flee to another. Truly I tell you, you will not finish going through the towns of Israel before the Son of Man comes.
24 “The student is not above the teacher, nor a servant above his master.25 It is enough for students to be like their teachers, and servants like their masters. If the head of the house has been called Beelzebul, how much more the members of his household!
26 “So do not be afraid of them, for there is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known. 27 What I tell you in the dark, speak in the daylight; what is whispered in your ear, proclaim from the roofs. 28 Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell. 29 Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care.[b]30 And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. 31 So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.
32 “Whoever acknowledges me before others, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven. 33 But whoever disowns me before others, I will disown before my Father in heaven.
34 “Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. 35 For I have come to turn
“‘a man against his father,
a daughter against her mother,
a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law—
36 a man’s enemies will be the members of his own household.’[c]
37 “Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. 38 Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me. 39 Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it.
40 “Anyone who welcomes you welcomes me, and anyone who welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me.
Jesus never said that the Christian life was an easy one. Instead, he encouraged an eternal perspective. Yes, death is a very scary thing, but for the Christian we can rest in the promise of eternal life with the Father through Jesus our Savior. Knowing the alternative, we should fight with all of our being to share the gospel to the lost in the world. Everyone needs Jesus. There are no exceptions–but only those who believe will receive the gift of eternal life. Jesus is our only rescue to a restored relationship with our Heavenly Father.
Do not be afraid to share Jesus. Pray for boldness to share the gospel with others even when you are feeling afraid. Pray for our brothers and sisters in Christ around the world who risk their lives daily to share Jesus with the lost. Pray that the gospel would spread life wildfire even in the midst of such persecution.
This year the country that was prayed over was Somalia. Please take a moment to watch a short clip that was shared on the night of the event that revealed a glimpse of the climate towards Christianity in that country. Take a moment to pray for the Somalians before you click away to move on with the rest of your day. If you’re still interested in knowing more, you can visit https://radical.net/ for more information.
Now, it’s your turn!
What Biblical verse is encouraging you today?
And, check out more Thursday Encouragement from my fellow blogger friends:
Nicole @ Christian Fiction Girl
Trisha @ Joy of Reading
Jacquelyn @ A Heavenly Home
Jessica @ A Baker’s Perspective
Gina @ Stories By Gina
Rebecca @Rev. Rebecca Writes