Generation Cedar

From, Martyr of the Catacombs, another book I highly recommend you read to your children.

“You see before you men and women who have left friends, and home, and honor, and wealth, to live here (dark, dreary underground tunnels among tombs) in want, and fear, and sorrow, and they count all this as nothing for Christ; yes, they count even their own lives nothing.  They give up all for Him who loved them.”

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22 Responses

  1. Thank you for the recommendation. I read Jesus Freaks to the kids last year, and just got Foxes Book of Martyrs thru Paperback Swap.
    Incidentally, my aunt, upon hearing that I was sick, said: She wouldn’t be sick if it weren’t for her stress and overcrowded living conditions.
    HA! 7 children 12 yo-4 mos and 2000 sq. ft. I’m not stressed, I’ve got it made! And we, as Americans, really have no place saying anything about cramped living conditions. Sheesh!

  2. But why do they count it as “nothing”? We may not be able to give anything that compares to what Christ did, but our lives are God’s greatest gift, and our families are our blood and our home, most certainly SOMETHING.

  3. I simply can’t call any of God’s gifts nothing, especially not our lives and our loved ones.

  4. Jennifer, it’s just a reiteration of Acts 20:24 “However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the gospel of God’s grace.”

  5. Ginger, I think the links have been disabled on Kelly’s blog (to avoid spam). Just copy and paste the URL into your browser, or simply go to rodandstaff.com to find it.

  6. Jennifer, our lives are a precious gift from the Lord, but we have to remember that we are not our own, but we’ve been bought with a price–the blood of Jesus. So, “whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord: whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord’s.” Romans 14:8

  7. Re: counting our lives as nothing, I thought of this:
    Philippians 3:8
    More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ

  8. I know that Scripture well Mary Jo, but that has nothing to do with calling something precious “nothing”. I think the quote in Acts is comparing to a life without testifying for Christ, which would be empty. I’m familiar with that Lori, thanks for the reminder. Even so, I don’t like the idea of calling our families nothing.

  9. J – ” I don’t like the idea of calling our families nothing.”

    I’m not seeing this in the text. I’ve read it a couple times and can only find

    “they count all this as nothing for Christ; yes, they count even their own lives nothing. They give up all for Him who loved them”

    They consider this each of him/herself. Not of his companion.

  10. J- I see now how you’re interpreting it – to give up all and count as nothing – as counting family as nothing. I think he’s saying that all loss and grief is nothing – as in the trials. Not that those lost were nothing.

    This is not a correction – just a grasp at understanding a pov I had missed.

  11. No problem, Lori. I’m glad you see where I got what I’m sure now is a mistaken impression.

  12. @Ginger- I have EIGHT children 12- 6 months and a little under 1200 sq ft. You’re doing just fine. It’s only in our so-called “developed” nation that we think we never have enough. 🙂

  13. I have been having a hard time praying for our needs lately. In the back of my mind I keep thinking, most of the world, and many christians have far less than me (we are considered below the poverty line in America). What right do I have to ask for_________. I just feel so selfish and self centered when I pray for a vehicle that we all fit in and runs ok, or money to get the kids new shoes because their toes are sticking out. How can I bring these needs before God with a humble heart, while others are being killed for christ?
    I’m not making light of this, I have been really struggling. When my husband asks me to pray for a “need” I can’t seem to do it without feeling awful.

  14. Rachel,

    I know your heart precisely. My daughter and I had the discussion this morning (we’re still reading this incredible book) about how our American minds are SO far from what these Christians and still many around the world endure that we would wilt under half the persecution.

    When I stop and think about the things I whine about (When will be able to afford to get grass planted in our bare backyard???) I’m ashamed.

    I don’t know the answer. Gratefulness for the abundant blessings I think we’re experiencing still living under the blessing of God from our forefather’s obedience is a start…constant renewal of what God REALLY says about trials and persecution. And a determined effort to avoid being self-focused…at least for me, this is big. Praying for daily bread and realizing God did bless some with wealth and prosperity and it was good when those were using it with an outward-turned heart, giving back what God had given them.

    “Thy will be done” I think should be our prayer. Praying for needs and then praying for contentment if/when those needs are not “his will”??? Just rambling.

  15. “Praying for needs and then praying for contentment if/when those needs are not “his will”???”

    I think that sounds reasonable.

    Rachel, if it helps, I sort of categorize my prayers. Every night I pray first for others: the lost, the helpless, the poor, and some different each night. Last I pray for a need, whether it’s something I need help with everyday or that particular day. Praying for a pressing need, like getting rid of a personal demon is very important because if Satan’s plaguing you fully, you won’t be able to function properly and wholly as a servant to God and will be little help to others.

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