walk in the word
By which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire. —2 Peter 1:4
“Precious” is not a kindergarten word—you’ll probably never hear a five-year-old use it. When you’re young, you don’t know what is valuable. You think quick, cool and easy are high commodities. But the older you get, the more you realize precious doesn’t come instantly. It takes time to see how great God’s promises are and to come to treasure them as precious.
The apostle Peter is infamous for his impulsive behavior. In the Gospels, he was fast, foolish, and passionate. He was more heat than light in those early days. When we meet him again thirty-five years later in 2 Peter, he has grown slower, softer, and thoughtful. His writing exudes well-worn wisdom. By then he knew what was precious. Shortly after Peter wrote this final letter, he gave up his life for Jesus Christ.
Peter learned a lot about what has the greatest value in this world and in our faith. And he used the word precious to express this treasure. He wrote of the “precious blood of Christ” (1 Peter 1:19) and described our faith as precious (1 Peter 1:7). He called believers precious stones (1 Peter 2:4). He referred to Jesus as a precious cornerstone (1 Peter 2:6) and tells us about God’s “precious and very great promises” (2 Peter 1:4).
Like Peter, you will find that precious things come to those who aren’t in a hurry. It takes experience and attentiveness to get to the place where you realize what has value that truly lasts.
Precious also takes proving. Something isn’t precious to you until you’ve demonstrated it to be so—when you’ve understood the depth of its meaning and worth. When Peter defined God’s promises as precious, he based that description on personal experience. He had found firsthand that hanging onto what God has said is the best way through every passage in life.
Approaching the threshold of the New Year, which of God’s promises are precious to you? Which ones are you storing up in your heart and mind to carry with you into the future?
Perhaps you should start a list of God’s promises as you read His Word. Make it your intention to believe His promises are precious and very great, and commit to start knowing them by heart. Then you’ll be ready to hang onto them through whatever challenge comes next.
What five promises of God can you write down right now? How did each of them become memorable to you?
Where are you tracking how God is keeping His promises? If you aren’t, how will you put that into practice?
Lord, thank You for Your Son’s special promise to go with me to the ends of the world and the end of the age. Thank You that Your promises become most precious and most effective when I need them most. Thank You for the confidence to face the uncertainties of the year ahead because I can have confidence in You. Your promises are precious and I thank you for making them available so I can lean on them and rest in them every day. I am so grateful to You, and in Jesus’ name I pray, amen.
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