Friday, September 18, 2009

I Peter 2:19-23

I lived and worked for a while in Africa. After being there six months I went to a gathering at an American’s home and saw for the first time during my stay an American flag. I loved Africa, but I’ll never forget the sudden rush of pleasure I felt in seeing that symbol of my true home.

The salutation which begins I Peter says that we are “strangers in the world.” Although we love this world and a lot of things about it, it is our temporary home. I have a US Passport but my real citizenship isn’t for a country I can see.

One wonderful thing about these New Testament letters to young churches is that for the first time, people were holding in their hands letters which were “citizenship manuals,” letter which described the life, behavior and values of their new country. In this reading, Peter tells his readers, you may have to hold your tongue, and suffer even if you are doing the right thing, and here is an example of what this should look like. He goes on to talk about how Jesus, who was sinless, had to suffer unjustly but did not retaliate.

It’s not uncommon in our dealings with others that we have to be patient. We may think we are in the right, and we may be, but let us pray for patience. Jesus’ words come to me, “Blessed are the peacemakers.” (Matthew 5:9). Let us be people of peace.

No comments: