v 14. And then, dear brothers and sisters, you suffered persecution from your own countrymen. In this way, you imitated the believers in God’s churches in Judea who, because of their belief in Christ Jesus, suffered from their own people, the Jews.
I wonder where you feel the most pressure on your Christian life and walk with God? These Thessalonian believers were under pressure from friends and neighbours to conform to the social norms of the day. But I am reminded of one of Jesus’ sayings found in Matthew 10: 34-36. “Don’t imagine that I came to bring peace to the earth! I came not to bring peace, but a sword. ‘I have come to set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. Your enemies will be right in your own household!’
For sure, the hardest pressure to handle in the Christian’s experience can sometimes come from the family – the very people we are closest to and love the most. It is not so much bitter persecution or the general indifference and apathy we encounter in society but rather the silent cold-shoulder of a family member that hurts the most.
Pray for families divided on matters of faith and following Jesus, that they will experience fresh love and hope for the future.