For we don’t have a high priest who can’t sympathize with our weaknesses but instead one who was tempted in every way that we are, except without sin. Finally, let’s draw near to the throne of favor with confidence so that we can receive mercy and find grace when we need help. ~Heb. 4:15-16 (CEB)

The powers of this world do not want to see their authority and control usurped by another, even if that other is God. To preach a message and practice a life of authentic discipleship will make us uncomfortable and make others anxious and sometimes hostile. We are not above the struggle of what it means to follow Jesus. The complex issues of life do not lend themselves to easy answers. It is not easy to know with certainty the path we are to follow. And often, after careful discernment, the direction we hear is not the way we would have chosen. There is often resistance within us to the way we are convinced God is calling us to travel. It is a strenuous journey of faith that permits us to say with Mary, ‘Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word’ (Luke 1:38).

We should not expect instantly to be where Mary was in her witness. Neither should we think that there is something wrong with us because we struggle with internal or external opposition. Self-examination and the help of a faithful spiritual guide are ways to test our perceptions with reality” ~From A Wesleyan Spiritual Reader by Ruben P. Job

Almighty God, give me the strength this day to live out my witness. May my actions follow the words that I speak. May the path I take be the one You would have me travel today. Help me to do it with a happy heart and a willing spirit. Amen.

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