1 Peter 4
Peter in chapter 4 of 1 Peter brings in a new thought. Often our actions are questioned. “Why did you do that?” Verse 5 says, “But they will have to give account to him who is ready to judge the living and the dead.” Our lives are called to account in the court of public opinion but ultimately we will face our creator. Peter reasons that a “guilty” in the kingdom of this world will be an honor in God’s court. When we refuse to live by actions that please the crowd so that we can fit in and so that we can satisfy the emotions of the minute whether that be sexual, revenge, greed or covetousness, we are choosing approval by the world but missing the mark with God. The harder path is to choose God’s standards that calls us to “our better selves.” The world will find us guilty of being boring and weird but we will in reality be living by higher standards that please God. We will be guilty as charged by human standards “but live according to God in regard to the spirit.”
Verse 5 is Peter’s famous quote, “Love covers over a multitude of sins.” We are charged to love, to offer hospitality, to speak, and to serve as unto God. We are not to be surprised by these struggles but Peter encourages us that any struggles should come from doing good, not evil.
So which of the areas Peter lists: love, hospitality, speech, or service challenges you today? Perhaps set a simple goal of saying kind words to three people today – a friend, a spouse, a child, a neighbor. Everyone loves to be complimented when it is genuine so think what you might be able to slip into a conversation. Be genuine. If words fail you then give a smile or a hug. Blessings as you bless others!