1 Peter 4:12-14
“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.” vs. 12
From the beginning people have tended to believe that if they began to walk in the Way of Jesus, life would be immeasurably better for them. That’s not a surprising assumption because often that’s what they’ve been told. But Peter was not that kind of teacher. Instead of promising wealth and health he told his readers not to be surprised when life brought suffering and pain. That’s how it was in the first century and that’s still what we experience. Oh, we may not be arrested and beaten in the course of daily living, but there’s still plenty of ugly stuff that can catch us unawares. It’s happened to nearly all believers. We can cruise along merrily for a long time and then be ambushed by death, divorce, job loss, cancer, alzeimher’s, or some other fiery ordeal. Peter called those moments tests, times when we wonder if there is any benefit in believing at all. We should know that those tests do not come from God, even though there are some that say they do. Such a notion is completely antithetical to the picture of God’s unconditional love that is revealed in Jesus. Yes, bad times come, and we should not be surprised when they do! And they do test us, of course they do, but such suffering is a part of life in Christ, and it always makes us stronger.
Thought for the Day: What is the biggest test for my faith?