1 Peter 2:1-10
Rid yourselves, therefore, of all malice, and all guile, insincerity, envy, and all slander. Like newborn infants, long for the pure, spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow into salvation— if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is good. Come to him, a living stone, though rejected by mortals yet chosen and precious in God’s sight, and like living stones, let yourselves be built into a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. For it stands in scripture: “See, I am laying in Zion a stone, a cornerstone chosen and precious; and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame.” To you then who believe, he is precious; but for those who do not believe, “The stone that the builders rejected has become the very head of the corner,” and “A stone that makes them stumble, and a rock that makes them fall.” They stumble because they disobey the word, as they were destined to do. But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s own people, in order that you may proclaim the mighty acts of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.
The writings of 1 Peter were initially written for those who were aliens, or immigrants, in a strange place unlike their origin home, and Peter is their motivational speaker. To those facing persecution as new minorities in a foreign land, Peter bravely calls them to rid themselves of the negatives shouted at them, and take up their place as a cornerstone and become a spiritual house: a church. But, this writer also speaks to those of us who do not find ourselves as immigrants on a daily basis; it too is our job to serve as the cornerstone of God’s spiritual house. We hold a responsibility to create a spiritual house of welcome in God’s sight. We stumble on the cornerstones when we fail to hear God’s welcome and fail to offer welcome to others. By being a cornerstone, we help others become their cornerstones.
As you go throughout your day today, think of the ways in which you are part of the cornerstone that helps welcome those who find themselves as aliens in a new land. How can we invite others into our churches so that they can be their own cornerstones?
Lord, help us to be your cornerstones. Help us to foster others so that they too might be your cornerstones. Remind us to welcome the stranger and to help one another up when we stumble and fall. Bathe us in your light and mercy. Remind us to be merciful. Amen.