"Consider the following," says Rudy Tidwell, columnist for the Carroll County Times:
A student studies his books diligently, burns the midnight oil studying, goes without eating properly, gets his degrees and his names is included in a 'Who's Who' book and he's called a GENIUS!
An athlete works out everyday, follows the coaches' instructions, disciplines his life rigidly, puts almost every waking moment into his sport, goes to the Olympics and wins a gold medal and he's called a CHAMPION!
A lodge member meets all the requirements for advancements, never misses a lodge meeting, gets involved in all sorts of civic and lodge activities and eventually makes it to the top position in his lodge and he's call a GRAND MASTER!
An entertainment idol burns the candle at both ends, compromises moral standards in order to advance, uses people to get to the top of his profession, neglects his family and ignores his spiritual life and he's called a STAR!
"However," he continues:
A Christian can get his heart right with God, get excited about his salvation and new life, live under the Lordship of Jesus Christ and walk in the fullness of the Holy Spirit, attend Bible study and worship, show joy ... weep over sin .. read his Bible and pray, and do you know what some people will call him? A CRAZY RELIGIOUS FANATIC! Strange, isn't it?
"God blesses you when people mock you and persecute you and lie about you and say all sorts of evil things against you because you are my followers. Be happy about it! Be very glad! For a great reward awaits you in heaven. And remember, the ancient prophets were persecuted in the same way" (Matthew 5:11-12, NLT).