1 Peter (Today's New International Version unless otherwise noted)
1 Peter 5
To Elders and Young Men
1To the elders among you, I appeal as a fellow elder, a witness of Christ’s sufferings and one who also will share in the glory to be revealed: 2Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, serving as overseers—not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not greedy for money, but eager to serve; 3not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock. 4And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away.
Jesus, the only people "under my care" would be my family. Well, I guess there are the people at work too. Help me to be a good shepherd. Help me to be kind and gently, yet also to lead and to lead as You would. I have not been a good leader, especially of my family. Change me Lord.
5Young men, in the same way be submissive to those who are older. All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because,
“God opposes the proud
but gives grace to the humble.”a
6Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.
Jesus, You know I can be a proud person. You know I can start to believe in my own mind and abilities. Help me to remember that I am nothing, absolutely nothing without You. Help me to love as You would love and care as You would care and to be submissive and humble.
7Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
Jesus, I know we are not to worry, but I'm so good at it! I worry about work, my wife, my children, my country…the list never ends. I can't sleep because my mind is racing. It is not right. You are in control. I am to live for You and let You take care of the rest. I am sorry Lord. Help me to give my problems and concerns to You, for if You are not part of the answer, the answer is not really an answer at all.
8Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 9Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings.
Jesus, You know I have fallen so often. The devil surely is prowling and waiting to tear me to shreds. I have not hope but You. Fill me with Your Spirit. Make me wise and strong through You. Keep me close to You and Your Word, for You are the Lion of God. Keep me Lord!
10And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. 11To him be the power for ever and ever. Amen.
Jesus, I know I have fallen so often. To think that some day You will make me strong, firm and steadfast, that amazes me. I hardly believe it could really happen. I know that I am weak and feeble. If ever I can be seen as strong, it would be Your strength, not mine. Please Lord, rescue me and make me strong in You. But if I need to suffer and struggle longer, Your will be done.
Peace to all of you who are in Christ.
Jesus, Your peace is not the absence of fighting. Your peace is the inner knowing that it is all in Your hands and I need not be upset or worried. Give me that peace Lord. Settle the knowledge of Your love and power into my sould and help me to rest in You.
a 5 Prov. 3:34
b 12 Greek Silvanus, a variant of Silas