“Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.”
(Continued from Day 23)
“That sounds like a much slower way of grappling with the issue rather than going out and trying to fight the way that the world does.”
“It is, but it’s also the only way that we’ll see any lasting, godly change here. If we’re serious about this, then we’ll fight not on our feet, but on our knees.”
John nods as he thinks over what this might mean for him, and for others.
“So… is this what you’re going to talk about in your speech today?”
His father laughs.
“Some of it, yes. More of it will be a celebration of your marriage to Marie, the founding of a new family, and the joy that this brings me, and the joy it brings to our broader family, and our community.”
“But you are going to talk about this?”
Michael runs his hand through his hair a moment.
“I am, yes. We have a responsibility to speak the truth both in and out of season. Our world seems to have forgotten that, and when we silently go along with what the world wants, we cease to be salt and light. What good would it be for us to be Christians, and to not proclaim the word and will of God?”
“You know that some won’t like that, right?”
“Of course I do. It’s the price we have to pay. Don’t get me wrong, Christians make mistakes, and we’ve made some doozies in the past. We need to repent; we need to say sorry for those things. But we also need to keep pointing to God and his will, and calling people to surrender their lives to God, that they might find the only life that will matter at the end of all things, because God truly wants the very best for us.
If we can’t do that, if we won’t do that, then we may as well give up our faith and walk away.”
We thank you that you reward those who are persecuted for standing firm in proclaiming your will and your word.
We pray for our nation, that those who call on your name would speak the truth in love, regardless of the cost.
May the Holy Spirit work in the hearts of our leaders, whether religious, political, or social, that they would understand what your will is, and that they would be convicted by it, regardless of the choices they make.
In Jesus‘ name,
Devotionals written by Ben & Thea Pratt with editorial assistance by
Warwick Marsh & David Rowsome from Canberra Declaration with thanks for input and advice from an interdenominational editorial team. The team at the Canberra Declaration also thank the team at the National Day of Prayer & Fasting for their kind assistance