Daily Devotional – Tuesday April 18 2006
1 Peter 1:13 - 25
Lord, bless me with understanding and clarity. Open me to your message and love.
Dear reader, I am back and glad to be. Please accept my wish that God has blessed you this Easter in a very real way, that Jesus’ presence in you life is strengthened. This year provided the opportunity for me to concentrate and focus on the Passion and what it means to me. This doesn’t always happen. I can be easily distracted by conflicting priorities. Not this year. Sunday morning had an excitement I have missed in recent years. The powerful sermons on Friday night and Sunday morning together with the music and drama created a very real and uplifting experience.
I consider myself very fortunate to have access to St. Matthews and its wonderful people where Jesus’ presence can be experienced.
Peter challenges his readers to gird our minds, be sober and focus on Jesus and what he offers. I believe I did this during this past Easter and I was rewarded for it. Do you find that when you don’t focus and try to do too many things at once, that your stress level goes up? I do. Too much unfocussed activity breeds anxiety and stress. Stress caused by fear, often fear of the unknown. This influences our behavior and not for the good. When I am anxious and stressed I tend to protect myself and withdraw. This is not the person I am supposed to be.
Peter reminds us that we are to have confidence in God. It is Jesus who gives us that confidence. Our faith in the risen Lord and knowing that we have been purified is the basis of our confidence. The grace of God’s love allows us to relax and focus on him. Don’t we all want and need that feeling of calm and warmth that comes with focused prayer. The cares of today’s world are of no consequence when compared to the peace and rest we will find in the eternal city of Heaven.
John Dickie, April 18, 2006