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You said that if we followed You we would be hated. If we are hated, may it be for Your sake, and not for the reason that we’ve been jerks. Help us to know the difference.

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When people are getting on our last nerve, remind us that if we are to grow in grace, sometimes it is necessary that we be stretched.

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Show us what the word “sacrifice” means to You, and what it means for us. Remind us that sacrifice does not mean “left-overs,” and that what You sacrificed for us set the standard for what our sacrifices should entail.

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Help us to endure, faithfully, courageously, under persecution when it comes. Lift up and encourage those who are enduring it now, giving them a rich sense of Your presence.