Revelation 1:9-11, 19 I, John, your brother and partner in the tribulation and the kingdom and the patient endurance that are in Jesus, was on the island called Patmos on account of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus. 10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord's day, and I heard behind me a loud voice like a trumpet 11 saying, "Write what you see in a book and send it to the seven churches, to Ephesus and to Smyrna and to Pergamum and to Thyatira and to Sardis and to Philadelphia and to Laodicea…. 19 Write therefore the things that you have seen, those that are and those that are to take place after this.”
John is a great leader and example to follow. Notice that he considers himself a part of the family (“your brother”). He leads the family of God by partnering with them in the troubles that cause distress as the family seeks to fulfill the mission of Christ to seek and save the lost (Luke 19:10). He partners with the family members in the kingdom, which is the privilege and responsibility of living under the sovereign rule of the Lord Jesus. He partners with the family (the church) in patiently enduring the persecution that comes from ungodly people when a person lives for Jesus. If we are disciples of Jesus, then we are going to experience the distresses of serving Jesus, the benefits of serving Jesus, the responsibilities of serving Jesus, and the need to patiently endure the persecution that results from serving Jesus. Are you willing to suffer together with the family of God? The suffering may include being banished from all other believers, like John experienced on the island of Patmos.
While banished on the island away from fellowship with other believers, John was in complete fellowship with the Lord (“I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day”). No one can keep us from being in close fellowship with Lord since the Holy Spirit dwells in us (Ephesians 1:13-14). Because John stayed in fellowship with the Lord even in the midst of persecution, we are blessed with a written document to help us know how to live in the present and be prepared for the future (“Write…the things…that are and those that are to take place after this.”). We need to stay in fellowship with the Lord during the distressing troubles that result from carrying out the assignments Jesus has given us. If we do, then Jesus will enable us to benefit many people. Set your mind now to remain strong in the Lord even in the midst of persecution.
John wrote the message Jesus had given him in a book and had him send it to seven local churches in Asia. John obeyed the Lord and millions have been blessed by what he wrote down from the Lord in 90 AD. As we obey the Lord by completing our God-given assignments, many will benefit. Set your mind to obey God no matter how tough your circumstances are. Look in the Word of God and see plainly your God-given assignments. Can’t see? Ask the Lord to help you see just as He helped John.