Pause

There's bound to come some trouble to your life
But that ain't nothing to be afraid of

There's bound to come some trouble to your life
But that ain't no reason to fear

I know there's bound to come some trouble to your life
But reach out to Jesus, hold on tight

He's been there before and He knows what it's like
You'll find He's there

from Rich Mullins, “Bound to Come Some Trouble”

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Listen

“Happy are people whose lives are harassed because they are righteous, because the kingdom of heaven is theirs.

“Happy are you when people insult you and harass you and speak all kinds of bad and false things about you, all because of me. Be full of joy and be glad, because you have a great reward in heaven. In the same way, people harassed the prophets who came before you.”

Matthew 5:10-12

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Think

Of all the crazy things Jesus said, these verses rank near the top. Happy are you when people insult you and lie about you? Happy are you when you’re harassed because of righteousness? When I think of lies, insults, and harassment, I certainly don’t feel happy.

It is clear that these words were intended to catch our attention. Jesus is not giving us facts to memorize. Rather he is seeking to capture our imaginations. His words invite us into the mysteries of God’s truth and beckon us to ask more questions.

The invitation is to God’s upside-down kingdom where the first are last and the last are first; where the rich are poor and the poor are rich; where the strong are weak and the weak are strong; and where success is not evidenced by popularity or fame, but blessing is found in lies, insults, and harassment. The kingdom of God is so much greater than anything we can imagine that Jesus had to tell us about it through parables, metaphors, and riddles. Imagine that!

Amy Bost Henegar

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Pray

Gracious Lord, open my eyes to your truths. Give me eyes to see your kingdom. And when times are hard, give me the courage to trust in your blessing. Amen.

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Go

Go, and know that the Lord goes with you:
let God lead you each day into the quiet place of your heart,
and speak with you;
know that the Lord loves you and watches over you -
that God listens to you in gentle understanding,
and is with you always,
wherever you are and however you may feel:
and may the blessing of God be yours for ever.

Adapted from anonymous prayer in All Will Be Well, ed. Lyn Klug

Amy Bost Henegar

Amy Bost Henegar is the Minister for Spiritual Formation and Family Life at the Manhattan Church of Christ in New York City. She is a native of Southern California and one of the leaders of the Women in Ministry Network, bringing together women ministers in the Churches of Christ for support and friendship. She lives just outside of NYC with her husband Matt and their five kids.

Jesus Giver of all Good Things

Jim McConnell

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