Colossians 4:18.Many of us feel as if we are bound up in chains. The stresses and pressures of life imprison us in a cell of duty, routine, deadlines, demands, failures, disappointments, and even by some of the things that actually bring us joy like friends and family. We can feel like we are a foot shorter carrying the weight of the world on our backs. And then we read this simple line, "Remember my chains."
"I, Paul, write this greeting in my own hand. Remember my chains. Grace be with you." NIV
Believers all around the world are in chains for Christ -- physical, emotional, or spiritual. They have done nothing wrong except to proclaim Jesus as Lord. Their lives are a jumble of uncertainty as they strive to serve the Lord and hide from the authorities. Some have been restrained in the physical battle by actually chains. Their lives are reduced to a small dark cell. They are left to simply pray and remember the Scripture they have learned. Each breath they take will be the one to leads them into another day of torture or to eternity. They are the persecuted ones.
The daily grind of living holds no comparison to the chains of persecution. My life is a breeze compared to theirs, yet I'm also challenged by them. Do I do enough for the Father? Why am I blessed to live in a country where I can worship freely? Why am I able to bow my head to pray in a restaurant without fear of being arrested? And do I live out the privileges of such a free faith to its fullest?
Lord, forgive me for complaining about the times I think my life is too complicated or frustrating. Help me to remember those who are truly suffering for Your Kingdom.
- What does Scripture say about suffering for Christ?
- Do you feel like you are bogged down with life? Many people are suffering real pain -- emotional, physical, spiritual. But most of us others are just whiners. Click here and read about believers really suffering.
- Pray today for those who are in chains for Christ.