The Best Out of the Worst
For reading & meditation - 1 Peter 2:11-25"Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God ..." (v. 12)
Yesterday we said that the first attitude we should adopt toward unmerited suffering is to accept that it is bound to come. Sin has unbalanced the universe, and suffering is one of the inevitable results. To deny this is to deny reality, and the denial of reality is the denial of life. Arising out of this comes our second principle: God is able to turn all suffering to good and glorious ends. J. B. Phillips translates today's verse: "... although they may in the usual way slander you as evildoers, yet when disasters come they may glorify God when they see how well you conduct yourselves." Note the phrase, "when disasters come." They are bound to come to everyone - it's foolish to think that, just because we are Christians, we are exempt. We are part of a universe that has been unbalanced by sin, part of a mortal, decaying world. However, though we may fall victims to life's disasters, we are able, through the redemptive purposes of God, to turn them into doors of opportunity and step through them into richer, more abundant living. A woman who was converted from one of the cults said in a testimony meeting in her church: "They taught me that the first thing I should concern myself about is my happiness. You have taught me that the first thing is to 'belong.' That makes me feel safe." Since she was safe, her happiness was safe too. Others are baffled by life's tragedies. Only the cross has an answer. Out of the worst, Christ brings the best, and makes life's victims victorious.
Prayer: Father, the more I think about this, the more excited I get. You have given me such security. I can stand anything because I can use everything. Oh glory! Amen.
For Further Study
1. What does the thief seek to do?
2. What does Christ bring us?