Nov 14 2015

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Stand Up for Christ and You May Be Persecuted

persecutedIn the New Testament we are told that it is “the usual” for Christians to be persecuted.  In the USA we enjoyed many years of religious freedom which sheltered us from all out persecution.  However many have endured being mocked for their faith.  I remember working at a summer camp and hearing some jeers thrown our way when a friend and I approached some other staff members.  “Here come our Super Christians!”  We just smiled and continued caring for them, but did not snuff out our light for Christ either.


A recent article grabbed my attention.  A teen who is a cross country runner was denied his third place win at a state meet, probably because he had the reference to a scripture verse embroidered on the headband that he uses to keep his long hair off his face when he runs.

Fox News reports:

Third place winner John Green was stripped of his victory just moments after crossing the finish line.

The West Forsyth High School runner was disqualified because of a headband he was wearing – a white headband that was adorned with a Bible verse.

It was embroidered with the words: “Isaiah 40:30-31.”

“Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall, but those who wait on the Lord will renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.”

It was a passage of Scripture that was sure to inspire any athlete – especially a cross country runner.

Read more at http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2015/11/11/was-it-bible-verse-teen-runner-disqualified-from-state-meet-over-religious-headband.html

lt’s interesting that just the night before reading this my husband and I had gone to see the movie Woodlawn.  It very powerfully told the true story of a movement by God’s Spirit on a high school football team in the early 1970s.  This broke down racial hatred, bringing love and unity to many in Birmingham, AL at a time when racial tensions were running high.  The movement spread to students and faculty, not just at their school, but to other schools as well.  A young black football player was used by God to show how an athlete who was despised by many due to his skin color could excel and glorify God.  One result was that the coach of the Woodlawn High team came to Christ himself, but later was persecuted and lost his job due to having the guys pray before games.

Here’s the movie trailer:



We were very moved by this movie and highly recommend it.  It encourages us to stand firm, even though persecuted.

I hope that John Green will continue wearing his headband which proclaims where his strength comes from.  And let’s hope that the referee’s decision is overturned and that he will be acknowledged for his win.  But even if he’s not, he and we run our race of life looking toward our heavenly rewards.


Start something:  Put a Scripture on one of these!



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