Endure part 7
“Suffering the Right Way”

1 Peter 3:8 “Finally, all of you must live in harmony, be sympathetic, love as brothers, and be compassionate and humble.”

 

We have all learned that life will come at us with all it has.  Peter is teaching us how to endure; it is not always about conquering sometimes life will be about simply enduring.  Peter goes from belief to behavior; enduring well will only come from right belief because right belief is what will bring right living.

Peter then begins to talk about relationships in Chapter 3; He did not want the problems out there (The culture) to become the problems in the Church.

 

Now Peter comes to verse 8 “Finally, all of you must live in harmony, be sympathetic, love as brothers, and be compassionate and humble.”

Suffer:  Any unpleasant hardship that you would experience.

 

All of us will face suffering, but it will come on different levels; we don’t all suffer in the same way!

Suffering is unavoidable but enduring is achievable!  Just because the exterior is collapsing does not mean that the interior has to.

 

Matthew 7:24-27 “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock:  He is not speaking of a physical house; He is speaking about our life.

 

25 and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock.  This passage does not say if storms come; it indicates that the rains will come and the water will rise; the wind will blow and beat against what we have built on this earth!

 

26 “But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the [sand]: 27 and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall.”

 

Jesus works!  “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock:”

 

What sayings are you paying attention to?  Are you wise or foolish?   Life is full of unintended consequences.  Some things are unpleasant but necessary.  Ex. My experience playing college basketball at Trinity. 

 

Work it out today so life will work out tomorrow.

 

“Finally, all of you must live in harmony…”  It takes more than one to have harmony.  You will not have harmony if everyone is singing the same thing.  Harmony will always compliment the melody.

 

What would happen if someone does not like the song and goes off doing their own thing? (Their preference)

Even if you don’t have what is called “perfect pitch” you know when someone is not on key.  The world knows if we are not walking in harmony! We should not tune the church to the world; we should tune the world to the church!  When the church is in harmony the world will be drawn to our melody!

 

How do we live in harmony?  1 Peter 3:8 “Finally, all of you must live in harmony, be sympathetic,

Sympathy is a feeling!   Pastor my life is about devotion not emotion.  Feelings matter!  I don’t want to be led by them but I do want to pay attention to them.  Emotions turn interaction into connections.

 

Romans 12:15-16 “Rejoice with those who are rejoicing. Cry with those who are crying. 16 Live in harmony with each other…”

 

“… love as brothers…”   Peter is saying don't view each other as strangers, or as mere acquaintances, or as distant relatives. View each other as close family.  Family can have some pretty serious squabbles and exchange some very harsh words, but only in the rarest cases does the family break up over it.

 

“… and be compassionate and humble.  Where sympathy is a feeling compassion is an action.

Yet compassion is not just about the action; the Greek word used here for compassion means to be kind-hearted.  Kind-hearted: “to feel generous in your belly.”

 

“… and be compassionate and humble.”  Humility is the key ingredient to community; it is preferring one another.  If you want to change the world it will take humility and it will start in your own back yard!

 

Ephesians 4:2 “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.