There is a price to pay for everyone who wants to follow Jesus. The world rejected Him and will reject us as well (John 15:18-25). Each one who follows Jesus must count the cost (Luke 14:25-34). Faithful pastors and believers in India are a wonderful example to me for they face persecution and rejection far beyond what I face in the USA. I feel badly they can’t have it easier like we do here, but when I see how these difficulties stretch and mature their faith I wonder if maybe we should have it harder like them!
Ruth is an example of a woman willing to give up all for her God. Both Orpah and Ruth said they would return with their mother-in-law Naomi when she left the girls’ country to return to Israel. They knew that meant leaving the life, the idols and the gods they grew up with. At first both were willing to do so to be with Naomi’s God and people. But as they moved further from their past and the cost of the decision they were making became clearer, Orpah changed her mind and went back to her past. Ruth alone was willing to give it all up for a new life and a new God. She knew it would be a high cost for she wouldn’t be well accepted at first and her chance for a family of her own seemed very slim. But she went out of love for Naomi and the God of the Jews.
It was hard for Ruth when she made her commitment. It cost her everything, but look what she gained. She became one of God’s chosen people, married and became the great-grandmother of King David (Ruth 4:17-22) and ancestor of Jesus, even having her name mentioned in His genealogy (Matthew 1:5-6). (February 15, 2019 Kurnool, India)
Ruth 1:14 “Your God will be my God”
Luke 14:25-27 Large crowds were traveling with Jesus, and turning to them he said: 26 “If anyone comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even their own life—such a person cannot be my disciple. 27 And whoever does not carry their cross and follow me cannot be my disciple
Are you guilty of expecting Jesus to make life easier for you because you are a Christian? If so, take some time to have a nice, long talk with God right now.
Cultural Tidbits 7
I have 3 means of communication. One is a friendly smile. The second is a thumbs up. Both are very effective.
The middle class continues to grow and education is spreading. How can I tell? People are now trying to figure out Jerry’s tricks. They no longer think he is a witch doctor.
Good – Mosquito infested open sewers are now mostly covered.
Bad – The cement slabs that cover them are very precariously placed. So don’t walk on them!
Public outside toileting is significantly less.
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