1 Peter 5:1-11
1 Therefore, I have a request for the elders among you. (I ask this as a fellow elder and a witness of Christ’s sufferings, and as one who shares in the glory that is about to be revealed.) I urge the elders: 2 Like shepherds, tend the flock of God among you. Watch over it. Don’t shepherd because you must, but do it voluntarily for God. Don’t shepherd greedily, but do it eagerly. 3 Don’t shepherd by ruling over those entrusted to your care, but become examples to the flock. 4 And when the chief shepherd appears, you will receive an unfading crown of glory.
5 In the same way, I urge you who are younger: accept the authority of the elders. And everyone, clothe yourselves with humility toward each other. God stands against the proud, but he gives favor to the humble.
6 Therefore, humble yourselves under God’s power so that he may raise you up in the last day. 7 Throw all your anxiety onto him, because he cares about you. 8 Be clearheaded. Keep alert. Your accuser, the devil, is on the prowl like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 9 Resist him, standing firm in the faith. Do so in the knowledge that your fellow believers are enduring the same suffering throughout the world. 10 After you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, the one who called you into his eternal glory in Christ Jesus, will himself restore, empower, strengthen, and establish you. 11 To him be power forever and always. Amen.
Listening to God: The way you deal with others is a window into your soul. If you are in right relationship with me, you will not need to elevate yourself on the one hand or feel inferior on the other. You will be at ease with others because your worth is rooted and grounded in what I think of you rather than what they think. You will not need to promote yourself if you know in the depths of your heart that I am working out my will for your life. Don’t be afraid of people or circumstances that seem to put you at a disadvantage. In my economy, downward mobility is the way up.
Journal or lift up your prayers and reflections to God.
*Our season of prayer guide comes from Joan Gray’s book, Sailboat Church: Helping Your Church Rethink Its Mission and Practice.