1 Peter 3:8-12
1:1-2:12 Hope is Displayed in our Salvation
2:13-3:12 Hope is Displayed in our Submission
To Government 2:13-17
To Employers 2:18-20
Like Christ 2:21-25
To Husbands 3:1-7
To Everyone 3:8-12
3:13-5:14 Hope is Desplayed in Our Suffering
1709 Sea Herring In Unison
Sea herring, traveling in closely-packed schools too numerous to count have a marvelous faculty for synchronizing their movements. Even when some floating obstacle compels a group to divide, with part of them swimming on one side and the rest on the other side of the obstruction, their rhythmic motion continues in absolute unison as if they were one instead of thousands. They coordinate their movements up or down, right or left, as if subject to a command control.
Tan, P. L. (1996, c1979). Encyclopedia of 7700 illustrations : A treasury of illustrations, anecdotes, facts and quotations for pastors, teachers and Christian workers. Garland TX: Bible Communications.
Helped Her Cry
Methodist preacher Charles Allen tells of a little child who went on an errand for her mother. She was late coming back, and her mother asked for an explanation. The child explained that a playmate of hers down the street had fallen and broken her doll and that she had helped her. The mother wondered what she could do to help mend the broken doll. The little girl made a marvelous reply, “I just sat down and helped her cry.”*
* Charles Allen, Perfect Peace (Old Tappan, NJ: Fleming H. Revell Co., 1979), 134.
Morgan, R. J. (2000). Nelson's complete book of stories, illustrations, and quotes (electronic ed.) (254). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.
Hard Living People
In his book Hard Living People and Mainstream Christians, Professor Tex Sample tells about interviewing Don Bakely, executive director of Crosslines, an urban mission in Kansas City, Kansas, for twenty-five years. Bakely told Sample this graphic story from his early days of pastoring a church in urban Camden, New Jersey. It had to do with the church secretary, Ella, and a neighborhood thug known as “Big Mart.”
Bakely tried hard to connect with the toughs and street people in Camden, and he especially wanted to reach Big Mart. One day he was sitting in his office, and he heard a commotion outside, profanity, shouting, a loud argument. It was between Ella and Big Mart. He was calling her a vile and obscene name.
About that fast, Ella comes tearing into my office. “Did you hear what that young man called me out there?”
“Yes,” I said.
“Well, what are you going to do about it?”
“That’s a good question, Ella,” I says, “a really good question. But the real question is what are you going to do about it?”
Stopped momentarily, and a bit exasperated she says, “I guess I want you to go out there and throw him out.”
“Ella,” I said, “I’ve been working for six weeks to get him in here. You want me to throw him out on the first day?… Ella, let me tell you a story; it’s a true story; then I want you to go home and think about it.…
“When Big Mart was a little boy, his dad came home one night in a rage and began to beat up Big Mart’s mother. He became so furious and so violent that he brought the children into the room, closed the door and forced them to watch while he killed her. He then took a paring knife and cut her head off in front of those children. When Big Mart could not stand it anymore he broke for the door and got out, but when he reached the top of the stairs, his father threw his mother’s head and hit him in the back pitching him down the entire flight to the bottom floor. It knocked him out, but when he woke up on the landing, he was lying on his mother’s head. That’s Big Mart. He’s the guy you met out there, the guy who … uh … called you that name.”
Ella didn’t say a word. She just turned and walked out the door … She was back in twenty minutes. I was worried. I wanted her to think about it longer than that, but she walked over to my desk and just looked at me.
“Well?” I finally asked, not really wanting to know what I expected to hear.
She says, “I guess I am going to have to learn how to get cussed out.”
“And,” said Don Bakely, “the ministry of that church began right there, right then.”*
* Tex Sample, Hard Living People and Mainstream Christians (Nashville: Abingdon Press, 1993), 160–162.
Morgan, R. J. (2000). Nelson's complete book of stories, illustrations, and quotes (electronic ed.) (257). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.
Inherit - like the children of Israel dividing up the promise land. Our greatest blessing is the Lord Himself. Ezekiel 34:26; Malachi 3:10.
Such As …
F. E. Marsh once listed some of God’s blessings for his children:
• An acceptance that can never be questioned. (Ephesians 1:6).
• An inheritance that can never be lost (1 Peter 1:3–5).
• A deliverance that can never be excelled (2 Corinthians 1:10).
• A grace that can never be limited (2 Corinthians 12:9).
• A hope that can never be disappointed. (Hebrews 6:18, 19).
• A bounty that can never be withdrawn. (1 Colossians 3:21–23).
• A joy that need never be diminished (John 15:11).
• A nearness to God that can never be reversed (Ephesians 2:13).
• A peace that can never be disturbed (John 14:27).
• A righteousness that can never be tarnished (2 Corinthians 5:21).
• A salvation that can never be canceled (Hebrews 5:9).
Morgan, R. J. (2000). Nelson's complete book of stories, illustrations, and quotes (electronic ed.) (76). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.
The world expects that if you give love or blessings you will recieve love and blessings back, but the Christian has all the love that the Father can lavish upon us already so we should give love even if it never returns to us. In this way may your love for other people be given even if it ends up being the worst boomerang ever.