Counting Stars In An Empty Sky By Michael Youssef

Day 6 of 7 • This day’s reading


Day Six

Your Shield and Defender

Scripture: 1 Peter 4:12–14

Abraham didn’t ask God to bless him, but God graciously promised that He would bless Abraham’s life. God would bless Abraham in ways he could never imagine, much less expect. 

Please understand, there is nothing wrong with asking God to bless you, nothing whatsoever. But I don’t believe you need to ask. God has promised to bless you when you follow Him by faith and go where He sends you. 

Through the ages of history, God has made good on His promise in Genesis 12:3 countless times. When Joseph, the great-grandson of Abraham, was sold into slavery in Egypt, the Bible said that God blessed Egypt because of Joseph. When Rahab the prostitute aided the spies who came into Jericho, God blessed Rahab and her family for blessing the nation of Israel. There are many other examples I could cite. 

I believe that one reason God has richly blessed America is because America has taken the gospel to the ends of the earth and has blessed many nations, especially Israel. 

As a Christian, you don’t go out of your way to make enemies. You don’t try to antagonize people into cursing you. But if you stand up for your faith, if you simply say, “I’m a follower of Jesus Christ,” you will instantly have enemies. If you don’t make enemies, you are probably not taking a bold enough stand for your faith. 

There is no one I hate or hold a grudge against. No matter what other people may do to me, from my perspective, they are not my enemy. They may see me as an enemy, they may hate me, they may wish me harm, but I will not hate them back. God has promised to fight our battles for us. If anyone curses us, God will be our shield, our defender, and, if necessary, our avenger. He will deal with anyone who curses us, and He will be more just and thorough than you or I could ever be. God always proves His faithfulness, and He always keeps His promises. 

How are you experiencing persecution today for standing up for your faith?