The apostles left the Sanhedrin, rejoicing because they had been counted worthy of suffering disgrace for the Name. Day after day, in the temple courts and from house to house, they never stopped teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is the Messiah.Acts 5:41-42 NIV
The apostles had been thrown into prison, put on trial, beaten, and forbidden to speak in the name of Jesus. I love their response to all this. They left rejoicing because they had been counted worthy to suffer disgrace for Christ. And they continued to proclaim him. And this was not just an isolated incident. Throughout the book of Acts you find the apostles, and others, suffering for the sake of Christ.
Now compare this to our situation as Christians in the US today. Yes, we live in a culture that is becoming increasingly secular and indifferent. And sometimes even hostile to expressions of faith. But we are free to worship God and are generally able to freely proclaim salvation in Christ. Yet sometimes we feel so terribly persecuted because some refuse to say Merry Christmas or fight to remove the 10 Commandments or nativities from public places. Rather than complain about the erosion of our so called ‘Christian rights’, should we not rejoice in Christ and boldly proclaim him to the world around us?