January 11

January 11, 2021
by: Gabriel Tseng
But Sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, but with gentleness and respect, having a good conscience, so that when you are slandered, those who revile your good behaviour in Christ may be put to shame- 1 Peter 3:15-16

Peter, the one who denied Christ thrice, speaks with authority yet humility on how we are to engage the world around us. How we are to be the light and in how we behave. He roots our behaviour always in our heart motivations, to be root and sanctify the Lord as ruling in our hearts, not to be ruled by our own sinful desires or the world circumstances around us. 

The phrase, “always being ready,” reminds me seasons and my state of being. I remember fondly and chuckle having children and sleepless nights, rocking them to sleep in my arm, often waking up in a state of panic as I rolled over. There were many sleepless nights, haunted by worry and not completely sure if I was awake or in a dream, that I would suddenly become aware that I was rocking my pillow. Or the odd night where a fire detector would erupt when the humidifier was turned too high and yet other days where I was simply sleepwalking through the day because it was the only time I could sleep. It was easy to complain then and easy to be grouchy yet joyful at the same time. I often wonder if any of that joy actually shone through or could be noticed. I was always grateful for other parents who were more blessed and less exhausted to empathize a bit with me and pat me on the back. Or more recently, empathy in dealing with a fussy child. 

I find myself on auto pilot at times throughout my days now as well. I sometimes call these days the ruts. I sometimes call these days the greatest evangelical opportunity since the dark ages. I often describe myself “deep in wander” as the world around us shifts around and we seek to find footing. I’ve had to preach often to myself that Christ is Lord over all, and He’s Lord over my heart. I’ve had to rehearse how I might describe the continued hope I have. I’m not always in the best frame of mine or ready to give an answer. Maybe that’s where I can begin. To tell of a story of a man unsure, to remember of past times where God has lead me through, and to again find the strength to hope again. I cannot give what I do not have and I do not want to feign faith or to reflect a false hope, but perhaps in my struggle and my perseverance, it is enough to show a contrite heart in Christ that at times struggles to believe, but yet somehow is sustained in the midst of that.

I know not how or every reason be, but my hope is clear when it’s Him I see

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