Normally hearing the word “penguin” brings visions of gleaming snow and ice with temperatures dipping below freezing, but the Humboldt penguin contradicts this picture.
They survive in the deserts of Peru and Chile. These 26-inch penguins endure the dangers one would expect in a dry, harsh environment. In addition, they negotiate an obstacle course to order to provide meals for their young. Their journey includes navigating steep slopes of unstable, rocky cliffs. And when they are successful, their path doesn’t get easier. They must weave through the herds of gargantuan fur seal that create a hostile maze before finally reaching the ocean.
Believers often feel they are surviving in an environment just as difficult. We’re out of step with others as we pray and seek God’s guidance. We believe and hope when others expect the worst. We are sometimes ridiculed and persecuted for our beliefs. And often outside church walls, we walk an isolated path as we follow Him.
As Christians we should expect nothing less.
John 15:19 tells us “ The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it, but you are no longer part of the world. I chose you to come out of the world, so it hates you.”
But, instead of finding this verse DIScouraging, I find it ENcouraging. Christ promises that one day in His kingdom there will be no hostility and no persecution for those that believe. I continue negotiating the challenging path knowing at the end of my journey I will be Home.
What verse encourages you when you are challenged?