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A New Attitude

1 Peter 2:21  For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you should follow in his steps. 22  "He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth." 23  When he was abused, he did not return abuse; when he suffered, he did not threaten; but he entrusted himself to the one who judges justly. 24  He himself bore our sins in his body on the cross, so that, free from sins, we might live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed. 25  For you were going astray like sheep, but now you have returned to the shepherd and guardian of your souls.

Jesus attitude to life runs counter to human attitudes. Throughout history we have thought to live defensively: strike back at those who threaten us, and preferably “hit him back before he hits you”. Jesus shows that there is another way: When he was abused, he did not return abuse; when he suffered, he did not threaten; but he entrusted himself to the one who judges justly (1Pe 2:23 ).

The challenge of Lent is to learn to step back from life by disciplining myself to speak second; to return anger with kindness; to reply to abuse with love. This is impossibly hard, and only is achieved if we “return to the shepherd and guardian of our souls.” (1 Pe 2:25).

 

Thought:

 Shepherd of my soul I give you full control,
Wherever You may lead I will follow.
I have made the choice to listen for Your voice,
Wherever You may lead I will go.

Martin J. Nystrom

 

Palm Sunday

The Wounds and Sorrows of Ministry

The Scripture passage for the day is drawn from Rueben Job and Norman Shawchuck, A Guide to Prayer for Ministers and other Servants, (Nashville, The Upper Room 1983), 136.

This reflection is from my own devotional exercises for the day

“To comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable” Finley Peter Dunne (1867–1936)