This week’s devotions are based on the Week 10 “Explore God” – A Life Worth Inquiring About! (WATCH HERE)
1 Peter 3:15 But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have.
I have used this passage many, many times in my ministry. But here’s the question that challenged me on this passage: “What would make someone ask?”
Peter is encouraging his readers to be prepared to give a reason for the hope they have…to everyone…who asks you.
So what would make someone ask?
It would probably be a pretty rare thing that someone without any context or relationship with you would ask, “Why do you have the hope you have?”
When people ask a question, their curiosity has been sparked. Something happens that leads them to ask a question. You don’t ask for directions unless you are lost. You don’t ask for help unless the situation is beyond your ability to handle. You don’t ask for an explanation from your kids unless their behavior has caused a question.
We ask questions when we are curious.
So what would lead someone to ask about the hope that we have?
A logical answer would be because they see a hope in you that they don’t have for themselves, but desire to have. So they ask.
So if the hope we have because we are connected by faith to Jesus is what is different, how does that show itself to the people around us? When does the hope we have in Jesus really manifest itself to the people around us?
Perhaps it comes up with the Monday “water cooler” conversation about the world events and coworkers express worry and concern over the end of the world, nuclear war, or escalation of events in the middle east. When you don’t seem agitated or worked up by it, they ask, “How can you remain so calm and not be worried about escalation of the conflict?”
You now have a question to answer and your hope to share.
Perhaps it’s a conversation around the Thanksgiving Table about a relationship that has gone sour and the family in general is worked up about it and is anxious about dealing with it. While you sit calmly and offer opportunities to address in a manner of forgiveness and kindness, another relative asks, “How can you be so loving when that’s not what this person deserves?” You now have a question to answer and a hope to share.
Perhaps its interaction with a neighbor who is going through medical challenges. They remember you sharing a hospital stay and not being anxious or worked up about it. They ask, “How can you be so calm when life can be so challenging?”
You now have a question to answer and a hope to share.
Everyday interactions are an opportunity to let the love of Jesus shine in and through us to others. Because Jesus’ love, grace and peace are working in your heart, they naturally spill out into our interactions with others. When we react or interact with the heart and love of Jesus, it will be noticed because it is different. And because it is different, people will be curious. When people are curious, they ask a question. And when they ask a question, YOU get the chance to share the hope YOU have!
Apply: Pick one of the scenarios in the devotion or make up one on your own. Write down how you would articulate your faith – practice answering the questions people may ask so you are ready when they do!
Prayer: Lord, thank you for giving me a hope to give out to others, AMEN.