Friday, July 5, 2013

Hope in the Face of Difficulty (2)

(I don't have access to a computer so am doing this on my BlackBerry. Layout and font will therefore be missing)

1 Peter 1:2-9.
2 May grace and peace be yours in full measure!
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! By his great mercy he gave us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 that is, into an inheritance imperishable, undefiled, and unfading. It is reserved in heaven for you, 5 who by God's power are protected through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
6 This brings you great joy, although you may have to suffer for a short time in various trials. 7 Such trials show the proven character of your faith, which is much more valuable than gold- gold that is tested by fire, even though it is passing away - and will bring praise and glory and honour when Jesus Christ is revealed. 8 You have not seen him, but you love him. You do not see him now but you believe in him, and so you rejoice with an indescribable and glorious joy, 9 because you are attaining the goal of your faith- the salvation of your souls.

Throughout the history of our faith we have been people of hope. When we are tempted to become cynical, or despairing - let us remember the attitude of the people of faith who have gone before us.

The letter of 1 Peter is written at a time when followers of the way of Jesus were being persecuted for their faith. Although they "may have to suffer for a short time in various trials", they are encouraged by "a living hope" of a life with Jesus that is "imperishable, undefiled, and unfading.".
The challenge for today is to give courage to one person who is less hopeful than me.

Fifth Sunday after Trinity
36 The Power of the Gospel
The Scripture passage for the day is drawn from Reuben Job and Norman Shawchuck, A Guide to Prayer for Ministers and other Servants, (Nashville, The Upper Room 1983), 225.
This reflection is from my own devotional exercises for the day.

Sent via my BlackBerry

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