Lord, today I'm thinking about my brothers and sisters all over the world who are suffering for your name's sake - the Persecuted Church. I live in such freedom that it's easy for me to forget the millions of Christians scattered all over the globe who live in destitution, disease, starvation, imprisonment, physical torture, and the threat of death simply because they are Christians.
I ask you to protect them from physical harm. But, at the same time, I know that often it is through persecution that your Church grows. Who said, "the blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church"?
I ask you to give them comfort for their wounds. I ask you to give them courage to endure all that they must suffer. I ask you to hide them in the hollow of your hands so that evil men cannot find them and hurt them even more.
I ask you to give them fellowship and joy in their distresses.
I've never faced inprisonment, beatings, or deprivation because I'm a Christian. But, someday perhaps I will have to do that. I've never had to watch my children or grandchildren tortured. God, give me grace to stand under those circumstances should they come. Make me ready for whatever the future holds.
My heart aches for My children who must suffer. They have been chosen to truly participate in the sufferings that Jesus, My Son, endured. They will be rewarded. Their suffering will be worth it when they stand before Me. It will not compare with the glory they will share for eternity.