When someone asks, “what defines who you are?” what is the first thing that comes to mind? Are you funny? Are you outgoing? Are you a rule-follower? Are you a rule-breaker? For most people, these attributes (or others like them) are the first things we say when defining ourselves. Unfortunately, you never really hear a teenager describing themselves as a fully devoted follower of Jesus Christ. God calls us to be morally pure through our sufferings, and “the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and his ears are open to their prayer. But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil” (1 Peter 3:12). God longs for a relationship with each and every one of us. For those who repent of living life on their own, who believe that Jesus is who he says he is and who follow after him, he gives the undeserved opportunity to be a part of his family. “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’s sake, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven” (Matthew 5:10).
Sometimes it is extremely hard to be pure and full of love, especially when our world is full of so much sin and hate. God is not caught off-guard by this and that’s the point. Being “righteous” and morally true, in such a broken world might lead us to endure suffering but we can take comfort knowing that is part of His greater plan in helping us become a fully devoted follower of Jesus Christ.
Challenge yourself to be more like Christ, and in every tough obstacle that you must overcome, follow his plan, not your own.