We work hard with our hands. When we are cursed, we bless; when we are persecuted, we endure it; when we are slandered, we answer kindly. We have become the scum of the earth, the garbage of the world–right up to this moment. 1 Corinthians 4:12-13
Very few people are able to take cursing or trouble and accept it without retaliating. It goes against their personal rights and will usually fight back.
Some will go to the authorities to fight back, while many will physically or verbally fight back. This can easily be seen by the amount of violent crimes that occur on a daily basis.
Paul talks about all the things he and his co-workers go through to spread the gospel message. When things are done bad to them, they endure it and are kind, though often seen as the scum of the earth.
Throughout the world there are many places where believers are looked down upon and often hated. The belief of Christians goes against the norms of this fallen world and the world does not like it.
As a result, the world will treat believers badly, by cursing them, persecuting them and slandering them. The treatment that believers can receive is not any different then how Jesus was treated by the people.
How the believer reacts to these types of treatments is what makes all the difference. Many will slip into the ways of the world and react in the same way as the world does, striking back with a vengeance.
Unlike the world, neither Jesus nor Paul struck back at the people treating them wrongly. They answered with strong, but kind words that pointed the people to God. They turned the other cheek when struck, rather than strike back. Doing this is showing God’s true love for all people.
As you stand strong and true for God and speak His word to all people, you will face times of trouble from this world. People will speak badly about you and may even physically try to harm you.
You have a choice as to how to react in each and every situation. You can react as the world does and strike back. Or you can choose to react as Jesus did and continue to show His love with no vengeance. One way will cause the world to fight more, the other way will point them to Jesus.
What are you willing to go through for God?
Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will allow God to strengthen and guide you; that you will know the love God has for all people; and that God will strengthen you to make the right choices in every situation.