The Stuff Martyrs are Made Of

St. Paul's escape from Damascus

“Bear bravely everything that happens, therefore: this is your form of martyrdom.[…]When pain impels one to blasphemy, to choose to hold firm under pressure and say nothing ugly is the stuff martyrs are made of. For the grounds on which Job, too, was crowned was not refusing to sacrifice when commanded to, but bearing sufferings bravely. Paul was also celebrated on this score, for the scourging, for the tribulations, for the other things he endured with thanksgiving.” (St. John Chrysostom: Commentary on the Psalms by Robert Charles Hill, pg. 182)

40 Martyrs of Sebaste

Martyrdom – bearing witness to Christ – can be done in our daily lives on any and each day.  Our reaction to life’s daily misfortunes – strife, pain, disagreements, grievances, suffering, tribulation, problems, and failures – bears witness to what role Christ plays in our life, bears witness to our faith.  In this way daily we bear witness to Christ.  Embarrassingly of course sometimes our witness is not inspiring nor ideal nor acceptable to ourselves or to Christ.  Nevertheless, we can come to see life’s daily trials and tribulations as opportunities to practice our faith and to allow Christ to be Lord over our hearts, minds, tongues, mouths, fears, emotions, anger, desire to retaliate, or need to justify ourselves and prove we are right!