Slow your breathing and become aware of the taking in and letting out of your breath. Focus on putting things aside so you will be open to what God is saying to you today.
1 Peter 4:1-6 (NRSV)
Since therefore Christ suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same intention (for whoever has suffered in the flesh has finished with sin), so as to live for the rest of your earthly life no longer by human desires but by the will of God. You have already spent enough time in doing what the Gentiles like to do, living in licentiousness, passions, drunkenness, revels, carousing, and lawless idolatry. They are surprised that you no longer join them in the same excesses of dissipation, and so they blaspheme. But they will have to give an accounting to him who stands ready to judge the living and the dead. For this is the reason the gospel was proclaimed even to the dead, so that, though they had been judged in the flesh as everyone is judged, they might live in the spirit as God does.
How do you describe living for God? This scripture addresses the life of a newly converted Christian. Knowing he or she had “sowed plenty of wild oats,” the scripture addresses that he or she should show restraint regarding earthly temptations. For some, it meant finding a new group of friends because the old friends won’t have the same ideas and principles. It means giving up your old way of life and living as Christ lived.
Christ suffered while on earth. It was to be expected that the newly converted would also suffer—whether it be criticism from friends or withdrawal from old ways. God knows how we struggle with the temptations of the world. Let us continue to struggle to live for God’s will and not ours.
Compassionate God, thank you for being quick to forgive us. Help us continue to focus on you and not the ways of the world.
Go with God.