Peter’s audience was made up of hurting people. They were suffering persecution from unbelievers in the form of rejection and, in many cases, outright physical abuse. The price they paid for their beliefs included everything from broken relationships to physical pain and rejection.
Peter wrote to encourage them. The wonderful part of his message lay in the perspective he offered his audience. In response to their cries of anguish he did not say, “There must be something wrong with you” or “Pray harder and your problems will go away.” Neither did he flippantly promise them an easy road ahead. Instead, he gave them this hope: They belonged to God, and he would never fail them. These words offer the same hope to us.
Most of us would agree that suffering is one of the most difficult parts of life to accept, much less understand. Though we wish we were exempt or cushioned from life’s harsh blows, pain is a reality. All of us suffer, and suffering is part of recovery. We must accept the fact that we will hurt from time to time.
God equips us to live at peace in the midst of tough times. We obtain God’s powerful help when we hold fast to Christ and live according to his will. This does not mean that our troubles will vanish because we believe in God. Rather, it means that God will surround us with his love when problems seem overwhelming. The way out of the storm is to take comfort in God’s presence and persevere through it. As we do, God will use the trials to bring about our growth.
Hallelujah! Always know that you can receive the comfort your heart yearns for on a daily basis in the presence of the Lord. Praise God!