Most Rev. Henry C. Ndukuba
Suffering, Affliction and Persecution can impede our walk with God. When people suffer physical, economic or social pains, attacks and their rights are denied them they may fall back from following Christ. The attacks on Christian communities have made some people to go back to the traditional religious practices. Bareness, poverty and strife have made many people to walk in the counsel of the ungodly and stand in the path of sinners. It takes the help of God and His enabling grace to stand suffering, affliction, and persecution especially when such come because of our faith in Christ Jesus. Jesus makes it clear that persecution, rejection and attacks even death may come. Some may afflict believers as a way of proving their piety. “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulations; but be of good cheer, for I have overcome the world.” The response of believer in Christ to suffering, attacks and persecution should be like the Disciples in Acts 4. At such times let us intentionally submit to God and not be discouraged or murmur. It is as we submit to God humbly that we can receive grace to resist the Devil and cause him to flee. Our heart disposition matters a lot. A heart of praise toward God will always prevail. Faith can sing through days of sorrow and tribulation in hope.
The Hymn writer, Mary Peter wrote “Through the love of God our Saviour, all will be well… We expect a bright tomorrow, all will be well. Faith can sing through days of sorrow; all will be well. On our Father’s love relying Jesus every need supplying, then in living or in dying, all will be well.” In the face of persecutions the Church should rise up in Prayer and desire the more that God be glorified, the Gospel be the more proclaimed with boldness and that the hand of the LORD be manifested in confirming God’s Word with the proof of His power in the Name of Jesus Christ. We need to engage the authority and people in advocacy and stand against the unjust systems in the society. Christians must engage in socio-political actions that will transform the society. We believe that the Word of God has power to change the individual and transform the society and community.