Handling Persecution

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“May he rest in peace. Hope you are doing well —. I remember our senior year that I took some extra yearbook pictures and used — name in the annual. I will pray for his family also. God bless you.” – My quote

“I bet you regret to this day that prank you pulled on — yearbook photo. He will forever be remembered as a funny faced Mike Burke. Thank God with age comes wisdom.” – Former classmate’s reply

These are not quotes from scripture but from a high school class Facebook page. A former classmate just passed away. I did not know him. I really do not remember all the circumstances from 47 years ago but I believe he left the school and I was able to use his name and others to put extra “funny faced” pictures of me in the senior class pictures. I know, pretty dumb but that was me, always looking for attention and trying to be funny.

As you can see, another former classmate, who was friends with our classmate that passed away, was not too pleased. It is a great reminder for me that my actions have consequences, even from way back. To be very honest, this bothers me that I hurt my high school friend with this prank and wonder if it also bothered my deceased classmate whose name I used to be funny. May God forgive me, bless my living classmate and may my deceased classmate rest in the love, mercy and peace of Jesus. Amen.

In today’s Gospel from John 10, the Jews want to stone Jesus for blasphemy because he was a man making himself God. Here is Jesus, perfect in every way, seemingly always being persecuted wherever he traveled leading to his suffering and death on a cross. During Lent, I have been reading about this persecution daily. How interesting that when I experience a tiny persecution from a quote, it can take me back a little. Maybe putting myself in the shoes of Jesus for just a second might help me to better understand what he was willing to suffer for me. We have an amazing Savior!

Mike Burke; Friday, March 18, 2016
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Handling Persecution

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