Daily Devotion for May 10, 2012
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come; Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever.
Prayer of Thanks for God's Creation
O Lord God of Israel and God of the nations, you are the only God in heaven above or the earth below. I walk before you with all my heart. I bless your name in the morning when I rise and in the evening when I sleep, and all the day when your creation fills my eye. Bless me to remember you this day. When I see and hear the thousand miracles of your creation, let me see them anew, recalling that you have made them, and no other; that I may live in your presence among the common miracles I take for granted. Through Christ I pray,
For the Human Family
O God, you made us in your own image and redeemed us through Jesus your Son: Look with compassion on the whole human race, O Lord; take away the arrogance and hatred which infect our hearts; break down the walls that separate us; unite us in bonds of love; and work through our struggle and confusion to accomplish your purposes on earth; that, in your good time, all nations and races may serve you in harmony around your heavenly throne; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Oh Lord Jesus Christ, who said to your apostles, "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you"; I pray that I and your whole church, the body of all faithful people, will know your peace, and live in harmony and unity, one with another, in accordance with your wishes. This I pray to you, who lives and reigns forever.
(Additional prayers may be found at Prayers for All Occasions.)
God be with you 'til we meet again.
The life of a Christian is an education for higher service.
~ Corrie Ten Boom
1 Peter 2:7-8 (ESV)
A Living Stone and a Holy People 
So the honor is for you who believe, but for those who do not believe,
has become the cornerstone," [Ps. 118:22]
and a rock of offense." [Isa. 8:14]
They stumble because they disobey the word, as they were destined to do.
Notes on the Scripture
Yesterday, we recalled how Christ commissioned Peter to be the "rock" on which His church was built, and how this happened immediately after Peter first confessed that Jesus was the Christ (Matthew 16:13-20). In yesterday's Scripture, Peter explained that once we confess our belief in Christ, we, like him, become the "living stones" that form the church.
Today's passage shows us a second aspect of Peter's message, continuing the metaphor of us as living stones. When we confess our faith and receive the Holy Spirit, we become another kind of living stone. To people who do not believe and refuse to hear the message of salvation, and would lure others to death, we become like stones in their path. We become "stumbling blocks" to the preachers of evil.
Life is frequently compared to a path or road. "For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it." (Matthew 7:13-14)
It is easy to picture the active, vocal, demanding atheists of the world hurtling down a smoothly paved highway that leads to death. Even worse, they take others with them, because the road to destruction is easy to find and smooth to travel. It is "downhill all the way". All you have to do is give in to your instincts.
Who will stop them, if not those of us who have already been elected to God's kingdom? How can they change, how will they even have an opportunity to change, if we do not warn them that they are on the wrong road?
Peter thus extends the "living stone" metaphor to those who openly oppose the evils of the world, especially those who dare to speak up and tell a hostile world the truth. We become stones sitting in the road to destruction, to make those speeding towards their death slow down, or stumble.
This is not intended to be cruel or mean or hostile — just the opposite. A disciple of Christ speaks always gently and out of love. But to witness to Christ makes us bold in our faith. When we speak up in favor of Christ, or when we speak up against attempts to glorify something we know is evil, we become the stumbling stones on the road to death.