By Robert Halsey Pine
Come on Peter, really? He says: “Rid yourselves, therefore, of all malice, and all guile, insincerity, envy, and all slander. Like newborn infants, long for the pure, spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow into salvation–if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is good.” (1 Peter 2:1-10 NRSV).
In one statement Peter just wiped out my average day. As much as we focus on Christ, we still stumble in our lives. It’s hard not to be angry, deceitful, insincere, hypocritical, envious and slanderous as we go about our daily lives. Even with the best intentions, we slip into these evil ways. I know that I have been a blocker of good communications by the way that I have reacted to others. There are those little demons that I have allowed inside me that pop out at all the wrong times.
I have been a poor example to my brothers and sisters. Just when my correct action or reaction would mean so much to someone, I give in to my sinful nature and in doing so fail to witness as I should for the Lord. My tendency toward my natural life nourishments overpowers my taste for the spiritual milk of the Lord. The Saints must have had tremendous patience. My lack of patience keeps me from acquiring a taste for the good that is the Lord. I have my own agenda, not His.
Charles Swindoll wrote that ten percent of life is what happens to us and ninety percent is how we react to it. Every day we are challenged to react properly to the things that happen to us. Whether these things are good or bad, we must always seek the Lord’s guidance in all things. Satan is waiting in the wings, ready to pull us back from our desire to taste God’s spiritual milk. Our patience is short. Benjamin Franklin’s words always bring me up short as he wrote, “Patience keeps the dear school, but a fool can learn in no other.”
Father God, I have followed too much my own take on life. I pray that You help me to seek You in everything that I do. Father; help me to have Your patience in my life. Your patience with me is a wonderful sign of Your love for me. Teach me to love my brothers and sisters as You have loved me, and to be patient as I await Your guidance. AMEN.
Robery Halsey Pine was born at Newark, Ohio in 1943. He is a graduate of Northeastern University and completed the program of Theological Education by Extension: Education for Ministry, School of Theology, the University of the South.