by Josh Caudill
A former professor of mine recently wrote something insightful about Jesus' call for us to pray for our enemies. In short, he wrote that, although it might seem odd for us to have enemies, as the Christian lifestyle so heavily emphasizes love, compassion, and sacrifice, the admonition is only more necessary because of this, as the Gospel calls us to the highest standard of integrity.
In other words, because the call of the Gospel is so starkly contrasted with worldly attitudes, we should expect that we will face opposition.
Peter's conclusion to his first letter reminds me of this, for in it, he calls us incredibly strongly to humility. Peter reminds us that in our humility, God will lift us up when the time comes. He calls us to be watchful, for the enemy is like a prowling lion, on the lookout for those whose lifestyles are an affront to the pride and destruction that the world draws us to.
And just like so many of Jesus' teachings in the Sermon on the Mount, this is a way for such conventional wisdom to be overturned. When our enemy approaches, we do not respond with anger or combat. We respond with humility.
For, as Peter reminds us, God gives strength to the humble. It is the proud who will fall.
This is a call for elders (1 Peter 5:1). This is a call for young people (1 Peter 5:5). This is a call for every single person (1 Peter 5:6).
This week, live in humility. Know that no matter your circumstances, God's promise is that He will lift you up.
Grace & Peace