Day 5 of 5 • This day’s reading


Your Different Reward

If you’ve ever had a job, you understand reward. As you perform, your pay and your position are promoted, right? This is generally how the world works. You do more so you can get more. 

Well, this world is not our home. We are foreigners with a different faith, a different foundation, headed to a different destination, with different thinking, and we will receive a different reward. Let’s use Peter as an example. He gave his adult life to sharing the news of Jesus and starting the Christian Church, but eventually he was crucified—upside down—on a tree. 

As Peter did more for Christ, he became more of a servant. This explains why Peter used chapter 5 to write to the leaders of the Church and remind them to be eager to serve, not looking for dishonest gain, but ready to one day receive a crown that won’t fade. That’s the difference. Worldly rewards fade; God’s words don’t. Peter may have hung upside down on a tree, but he knew soon he’d stand right side up before his friend, Jesus, who’d say something like, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”

The ultimate title in God’s Kingdom is servant.

After writing to the leaders, Peter wrote to young people. Think of people graduating college, just getting into the workplace, or maybe a few years in with big dreams. Peter didn’t say to do your best so you can make a name for yourself and climb the ladder. He said to humble yourself and submit to leaders. Don’t worry when it feels like your ideas will never be seen. At the right time, God will lift you up. But remember, God’s promotion is different from the world’s. The ultimate title in God’s Kingdom is servant.

As you finish 1 Peter, reflect on the different, sometimes upside-down, Kingdom of God. What is your place in it? What worries and anxieties can you give to God? How have you preferred earthly rewards over God’s words? Are there any situations or relationships where you need to humble yourself? Are you moving steadily toward servanthood?

Pray: God, I want nothing more than to enter Your presence and hear You say, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” Will You humble me? Make me different. Amen. 

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