Anzac day is a public holiday in New Zealand and some people will be already on there way to the dawn service to remember those who lost their lives during the war. I'm very thankful for their sacrifice and mindful of so many people that lost sons, husbands and brothers. It must have been such a very sad and bleak era. It's a blessing that we live in a time of peace in New Zealand (something I never take for granted), yet I am aware that so many people and especially brothers and sisters in the Lord still do not know such peace.
One of the prayer ministries I participate in is often sending requests for people in various countries being persecuted just because of their faith in Jesus. This saddens me greatly, that something I just take for granted and that is the most joyful part of who I am, for some is the very cause of why they are mistreated, yet they still continue on in faith. That truly brings scripture alive to me, when I read versus like 2 Peter 1:3,5 and following..
v3: 'His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness.
v5: For this very reason make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness knowledge; and to knowledge self control; and to self control perseverance; and to perseverance godliness; and to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness love.
I can read these versus as someone who has a good life and even then sometimes its a discipline to always practice them, yet for others that live with on going persecution and even live in a war zone, it would be a whole different challenge. Theire loved ones may have been killed, people hate them and hurt them on a regular basis. They may live in poverty, without adequate shelter, clothing, heat or food. For people in these situations who are believers, to truly live as Christ would have them requires a true depth of faith, sacrifice, commitment, perseverance and denial of self. Our flesh has a tendency to want to seek revenge, to hate and hold onto resentment and withhold forgiveness.
So this morning, while I reflect on Anzac Day, I also choose to remember the persecuted church around the world, asking that they be strengthened and even comforted in knowing others care and are lifting them in prayer. I pray that one day our whole world will know and live in peace. I pray a prayer of thankfulness to God for every rich blessing I have in him, for the gift of faith, for a reason for my existence, for purpose and joy in life, for my husband, for family, friends, health, a home, a garden, for food, clothing..I could go on and on. I am blessed and very very thankful.
Blessings to anyone who reads this xo