Good morning! I hope this day finds you and your family well, and I want you to know that you are in my prayers daily during this difficult time.
I invite you to take a few moments with me to reflect on today’s Upper Room Devotional below — as well as on the theology woven into “It is well with my soul.”
1 Peter 4:12-19 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
Suffering as a Christian
12 Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that is taking place among you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. 13 But rejoice insofar as you are sharing Christ’s sufferings, so that you may also be glad and shout for joy when his glory is revealed. 14 If you are reviled for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the spirit of glory,[a] which is the Spirit of God, is resting on you.[b] 15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer, a thief, a criminal, or even as a mischief maker. 16 Yet if any of you suffers as a Christian, do not consider it a disgrace, but glorify God because you bear this name. 17 For the time has come for judgment to begin with the household of God; if it begins with us, what will be the end for those who do not obey the gospel of God? 18 And
“If it is hard for the righteous to be saved,
what will become of the ungodly and the sinners?”
19 Therefore, let those suffering in accordance with God’s will entrust themselves to a faithful Creator, while continuing to do good.
Tim’s Devotional Reflection for Today
There was a lot of suffering among Christians in the first century as persecution was part of their lives in certain times and places. There are still places in our world today where people are persecuted because of their Christian faith. This passage from 1 Peter is a message of comfort and hope written to a community experiencing great hardship and suffering because of their faith. The writer makes a connection between the suffering of Christ and the suffering of the people.
We live in a place of freedom of worship and expression, so we don’t experience persecution for our faith. But aren’t there other hardships we face? Aren’t there people suffering because of the pandemic?
A good message for us today is found in the last verse of our reading. It is a call to entrust ourselves “to a faithful creator, while continuing to do good.”
Thank you for sharing this early moment of your day with me, with God, and with the words and music that I hope you will carry with you throughout the coming day and night.
I am so grateful for you, for our church, and for the Love that will see us all through this very difficult time. Please stay safe and well and we’ll be together again in spirit tomorrow morning!
Grace and Peace,
Dr. Tim Bruster