Peter – A Breath of Fresh Air
Current truth. Our less than two year old fridge went out…on the weekend…when no repair services are available. Does this inconvenience in our life mean that we have fallen from God’s blessing? Does them mean that God took the weekend off?
Past truth. Years ago, I worked for a place where I was under constant stress because of underhanded, secret dealings, behind the scenes behavior that was not of God, with leaders over me with little integrity and could not be trusted. I felt led there and worked hard to fulfill what God was telling me to do. But soon questioned God as to why He sent me. I knew from the first week on the job that it would be difficult knowing what I believed to be true versus what I saw when I arrived on the scene. I knew after the first staff meeting that I was different in belief and behavior. But I did that job, knowing I would have little time to do it, judgement and abusive words thrown at me, with testing and trying situations always in front of me. Did God lead me to this place as a cruel joke? Did he leave me? Was God not on the job all those months?
All minor and major inconveniences and trying situations are known to God. It is this scripture (and other passages) that saved me, grew me and transformed me. I was put through the fire to refine me. I am still put through fires to refine me. (Slow learner or faithful believer?) That’s what it means to stand firm in our faith in a world that thinks the opposite of what God’s Word says to us. I’m still growing, learning and trusting God to do what He wants in me. I need God. I need Him every hour of every day. I trust God to know what He is doing. AND the best is yet to come! Glory is just around the corner!
We who are Christians will be judged first for our reactions to life’s situations and circumstances beyond our control. (By the way, everything is beyond our control!) God is in all of it to help us, guide and direct us…if we let go and let Him. Take that to heart first. God does not take vacations and never sleeps. He is ALWAYS on the job, and knows you and I very well. He knows just what we need and when to deliver.
“So if you find life difficult because you’re doing what God said, take it in stride. TRUST him, He knows what He’s doing, and He’ll keep on doing it.”
1 Peter 4, The Message
Glory Just Around the Corner
12-13 Friends, when life gets really difficult, don’t jump to the conclusion that God isn’t on the job. Instead, be glad that you are in the very thick of what Christ experienced. This is a spiritual refining process, with glory just around the corner.
14-16 If you’re abused because of Christ, count yourself fortunate. It’s the Spirit of God and his glory in you that brought you to the notice of others. If they’re on you because you broke the law or disturbed the peace, that’s a different matter. But if it’s because you’re a Christian, don’t give it a second thought. Be proud of the distinguished status reflected in that name!
17-19 It’s judgment time for God’s own family. We’re first in line. If it starts with us, think what it’s going to be like for those who refuse God’s Message!
If good people barely make it,
What’s in store for the bad?
So if you find life difficult because you’re doing what God said, take it in stride. Trust him. He knows what he’s doing, and he’ll keep on doing it.
Dear Heavenly Father,
Thank you for Your Word and Holy Spirit that reminds us of your unchanging love, mercy and grace. Grace upon grace as the song goes that we sang yesterday at church. Thank you for never leaving us where you put us. Thank you for guiding and providing. Thank you for protecting us when we stand firm in You. YOU are God of all…and we are not. Continue to transform me.
In Jesus Name, Amen