In this world where Christian belief, religious practices, and leaders are so often under attack, it is easy to slip toward paranoia or at least a bunker mentality.
It can also be easy to despair.
In today’s Gospel (John 15:18-21), our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ gives comfort and encouragement to those facing a worst-case scenario of persecution.
If the world hates you,
realize that it hated me first.
If you belonged to the world,
the world would love its own;
but because you do not belong to the world,
and I have chosen you out of the world,
the world hates you.
Remember the word I spoke to you,
‘No slave is greater than his master.’
If they persecuted me,
they will also persecute you.
The world is a dangerous place, although it is rarely as bad as our worst fears, but no matter how dangerous the world could possibly be, our hope, comfort, and ultimate safety in Christ in unassailable.
No matter what we may have to endure or suffer, Christ loves and will save His faithful ones.
Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the living God, be merciful to me – a sinner.