LIFT HIM UP! I have a friend who will be preaching this weekend to 15,000 people worshipping in multiple locations in another State in the U.S. On Sunday I will be preaching to about 50 Haitian people in Lake Park, Florida gathered in a small rented building to worship Jesus. Hopefully all the folks in all the locations will lift up their hearts and voices in praise and adoration to Jesus and also open their hearts and be receptive to what God will say through His Word and His servants. Whether a person serves and worships Jesus in a large congregation or a small congregation numerically God is there and God is blessed by His people’s worship and love for Him. In America we are fortunate to be able to peacefully gather and worship God. In many parts of the world today Christians are killed because they dare to do what we take for granted in worshipping Jesus. Even though many people in America hate Christians and resent our freedom of worship and the fact we stand openly for Jesus every day very seldom do Christians in the U.S. die for their faith in Jesus.
Christians in the early Church often were killed because of their faith in Jesus as God and Savior. Down through the ages Christians have suffered for their faith in Jesus and at times in history even the State Church pursued and killed Christians who dared to be different. It is said by some that right now around the world more Christians are being killed for their faith than at any time in history. As I think about all this I am reminded of what a great country we live in with freedom of religion and assembly and the ability to gather with people of like faith and worship Jesus without fear. We also can worship in comfort and with a multitude of choices of time, styles of worship and languages. I am also reminded of how little I really pray for those persecuted Christians around the world who suffer much for their faith in Jesus. With our freedom comes responsibility to use our freedom to worship Jesus, pray for our brothers and sisters around the world who are being persecuted, and also to share the gospel with those around us in our country that need Jesus as Savior and Lord. I pray you will have a great weekend as you worship Jesus wherever, whenever and in the manner you choose. Let us give glory to God this weekend and every day, “My mouth will speak in praise of the Lord. Let every creature praise his holy name for ever and ever,” (Psalm 145:21 NIV).