Am I remembering that when someone hates me because of Christ, that it is a good sign, not bad?
18 "If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. 19 If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. 20 Remember the words I spoke to you: 'No servant is greater than his master.' If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also. 21 They will treat you this way because of my name, for they do not know the One who sent me. - John 15:18-21
I hope that perhaps you are starting to experience more persecution now, than when you first started this book. For the first 19 years of being a “Christian”, I suffered very little persecution beyond sitting next to the occasional atheist on an airplane. Ironically, the more we actually obey Christ, the more we will suffer persecution even from others who call themselves “Christians”. Not many people are persecuted for their faith today, because they have a very shallow and carnal faith that doesn’t make them look much different from the rest of the world. This may create temporary relief, but it will end in shame when we stand before Christ to give account of our half-hearted faith. Be courageous and encouraged when you are persecuted. Be sure to remember that what most of us consider persecution is very different from what some of our brothers and sisters around the world are going through.
I read a story about a brother in India, who couldn’t help telling others about the hope he had found in Jesus Christ. In January of 2015, nearly 200 people swarmed his home at 1 a.m. and forced him out. His wife begged the mob not to harm her husband, but they took him and ordered her to stay and bring him food in the morning. The next morning his wife made his food and came with her husband’s mother and sister. They traveled more than 60 km to the camp where the mob had taken him.