Day 362 | Tuesday, 16 March 2021
Day 362 | Tuesday, 16 March 2021
1 Peter 2:4-10 CEB 4 Now you are coming to him as to a living stone. Even though this stone was rejected by humans, from God’s perspective it is chosen, valuable. 5 You yourselves are being built like living stones into a spiritual temple. You are being made into a holy priesthood to offer up spiritual sacrifices that are acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 6 Thus it is written in scripture, Look! I am laying a cornerstone in Zion, chosen, valuable. The person who believes in him will never be shamed. 7 So God honors you who believe. For those who refuse to believe, though, the stone the builders tossed aside has become the capstone. 8 This is a stone that makes people stumble and a rock that makes them fall. Because they refuse to believe in the word, they stumble. Indeed, this is the end to which they were appointed. 9 But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people who are God’s own possession. You have become this people so that you may speak of the wonderful acts of the one who called you out of darkness into his amazing light. 10 Once you weren’t a people, but now you are God’s people. Once you hadn’t received mercy, but now you have received mercy.
“You are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession.” 1 Peter 2:9
Do you remember what it was like before email? We actually had to sit down at a typewriter, or with a piece of stationary and a pen and hand write a letter. Now, when is the actual last time you have written a letter to someone special? My sister writes letters and cards to many people all the time – they are letters of caring. She does not use technology. I remember writing to my grandparents and parents when I was in college just to let them know I was doing well and that I missed them. A few years ago, I received a hand-written letter from my grandson. It meant so much to me that I put it in a drawer and read in occasionally. A few years ago, I wrote each one of our children a personal letter letting them know what they meant to me. I called it “a letter from dad.”
Let me share the following from Elisa Morgan:
“Twenty-one “books” in the Bible are actually letters—epistles—caringly written to first-century believers who struggled for a variety of reasons. Paul, James, and John wrote letters to explain the basics of faith and worship, and how to resolve conflict and build unity.”
“The apostle Peter, however, specifically wrote to believers who were being persecuted by the Roman emperor, Nero. Peter reminded them of their intrinsic value to God, describing them this way in 1 Peter 2:9, “You are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession.” This lifted their gaze to God’s great purpose for them in their world: “that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.””
The Bible contains some wonderful, caring letters to help us in our relationship with God.
How does reading the Epistles as caring letters help you receive God’s encouragement? How will you share the hope of God’s caring letters today? Perhaps, during the rest of Lent you might write a letter to someone who needs to hear from you as a caring friend or relative.
Holy God, thank you for those writers of the scriptures who have written caring letters to let us know how much you care for us, your children. Lord, hear our prayers. Amen
Today: Postal workers who carry our letters.
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Rev. Douglas Knopp, Pastor Emeritus