A Brief Analyses of Persecution and the Holy Spirit’s Role in Providing Aid by Candace J. Bacon
ARC GUIDE LEVEL 2
Ideal for those already acquainted with our thought process at Ammi Ruhama Community
It has occurred to me that it is so necessary for us as believers in developed countries to know the Bible and to study it because we have no idea what physical persecution looks like. However, we do have a type of persecution when living outside of the faith bubble that has developed inside our country. We are persecuted by the enemy in a different way. He likes the fact that we believe we are free. He likes the fact that, in many ways, we are free, but it is with this freedom that he blinds us. This evil allows unspeakable things to be done in secret to children by authority figures and we hush it up because that person has a career or was chosen by God! It is this same evil that protects people who profit financially off of the gospel and make careers out of it instead of feeding, clothing and loving the poor, the broken, the marginalized and those in prison. It is a persecution that keeps women silent through cultural misogyny. It is the very things that makes us think that America is alright, because America is physically safe. But the truth is that we think we are rich and #blessed and #surviving but the truth is we are spiritually blind, pitiable, poor and naked.
The enemy will devour anyone he can get his hands on. And he will fight for us, even after we already know Christ. We are persecuted spiritually. The enemy shouts into our minds and sometimes through human beings, even human beings we love, bombarding us with a voice full of mocking telling us, “It’s not that serious, it’s okay to not pray today, I mean you used to be really intense, like a real God freak. I mean you haven’t been to church physically for how long now? Seriously, let it go, no one is listening and your bothering people! Why do you need to be so weird!? God is irrelevant to these people, you’ll never be able to talk to them. They hate your God and they’ll hate you too if you’re too passionate. Why would you say something so personal to someone you don’t know? What if they don’t care about God? Then you’re ruining their day! You can’t trust a voice in your mind to tell you that that woman needs prayer, she’s going to reject you and you will deserve it.”
If we are believers, we have another voice, “Listen…hear me…see that woman? Look at her posture, see her eyes, she needs me, pray for her, it’s okay, I know you’re nervous, lean into me, I’ve got you.”
It is much like a radio signal that we constantly have to turn around in our minds to continue to block out insecurities and tune into the voice of God, but spirituality, much like muscles requires exercise. Spiritual hearing requires us to listen repetitiously throughout our days. When we develop this habit of listening to the Holy Spirit and recognizing His voice above the enemy’s voice, we start to recognize that the enemy is always trying to sound a lot like God except for when he thinks he’s being sneaky or he loses his temper; then he reveals his true nature. When this happens–when we start to hear the voice of the Holy Spirit–we will start to feel convictions rise up in our lives. We will start to see ourselves for who we are, who we are required to either pray for and try to change or forever stare at the possibility of living beneath our potential while lying to ourselves that ‘I am who I am, and nothing will change that’.
Refusal to humbly go to God constitutes a stalling of our faith. If we do not listen, we do not grow. If we do not pray, nothing changes. If we do not see the need for change then we are not willing to see it. Pride stalls growth.
In clear contrast to pride, a Christian exhibits the fruit of the Spirit. It is evident, when someone is connected to the vine, that the Holy Spirit gives extra measures of grace to them as they perform the acts that God has set out for them to do. The person also exhibits traits that they may not have possessed before, extra measures of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness and Self-Control. Everything that person does turns out for the Glory of God and good for the faithful person involved, even if that good looks different than we might imagine.
In other countries following Christ sometimes means, jail, missing our children growing up, being hated, having our children questioned in school, beatings, starvation, personal and familial public humiliation, and personal and/or familial martyrdom. Here it means something completely different. He takes those moments that we would rather not think about, the moments that changed us, the moments that made us hard and He heals them, He gives us room and time to grow, then he provides people who are suffering for us to love in whatever way we are able and equipped by Him to do.
If there is more demand than it seems God supplied for, we pray fervently for a multiplying of the supplies. He has done it many times, far be it from us to lack belief that He will provide.
We will experience as much of God as we choose to pursue God, even when it feels He’s gone silent, He speaks through the silence. He speaks into our pain and our insecurities, He speaks into our habits and our finances, our spending and our giving. He will breathe life into every corner of our lives if we ask Him, all we need to do is communicate humbly, listen and practice.
A Note from the Author
God bless any of you who made it through this! This is just something God has been teaching me through reading the Insanity of God by Nik Ripkin for the second time.
This book has made me cry so many times because of the empathy and compassion and longing I feel for the people of these stories that share incredible things that built their faith and strengthened their minds to love God and the humans around them better.
God is not silent.
God is speaking.