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notes on Rejoicing At Lies

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Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil aginst you falsely, for my sake.  Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven.            Matthew 5:11-12
                                                                        by david berkowitz     

       Earlier this month I wrote how that I had been falsely accused of engaging in a homosexual relationship with another prisoner.  And I said how this came as a terrible blow, taking me by surprise and leaving me depressed and devastated.  My pain has been enormous, and it still hurts. 
       Yet something wonderful has now begun to take place.  My joy is returning.
       Only yesterday I found myself focusing on my troubles. Yes, they can appear to be overwhelming at times.  But this morning, while I was reading the Bible, I came across a message I'm very familiar with.  It was a portion of Jesus' "Sermon on the Mount."
       And when I read the Lord's words, I was reminded that I am "blessed" when others speak bad about me, and especially when they say things that are false.  I am not to weep.  I am to rejoice instead.
     I am to be  happy when people, whether out of ignorance or meanness, lie about me.  They did the same to the Lord Jesus.  And they did the same to the apostles and many other Christians.
      Even Stephen, the first official martyr of the church, was put to death because of falsehoods that were spread about him.  (Acts 6:8-15)
       Herein is my victory.  It is not in concerning myself with my own reputation.  Rather it is by trusting in Christ and knowing that, even when lies seem to advance farther than truth, this will only be for a season.  In the end, truth will triumph.
       In addition, my reward for enduring such grief will be much greater than had I never experienced such an ordeal.  I am indeed a blessed man!
                                                        David Berkowitz
                                                        June 9, 2005
(c)2005  David Berkowitz

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