Devotional for Monday, June 18, 2012
Twilight: Harmony and Prayer
by the Rev. Andrew Kuyvenhoven
Peter's first epistle is addressed to "strangers in the world," who have their homeland in heaven. They are not surprised that they suffer when they do what is right. They follow the footprints of Jesus.
1 Peter 3:7
Treat [your wives] with respect ... as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers (1 Pet. 3:7).
Peter also addresses couples who are Christians. In a Christian marriage, both husband and wife are "heirs of the gracious gift of life." As such, they appreciate and support each other.
Peter tells husbands to "be considerate as you live with your wives." Two thousand years ago this warning was necessary because of the rude background of these recent converts. Today the warning Is apparently still in order. Husbands must show their wives tenderness and understanding. Peter knew about the need for this warning firsthand because he himself was married.
Couples who are joint heirs of God's grace pray together, of course. Biblically speaking, it's unthinkable that a Christian couple would not pray together. But disharmony in a marriage will hinder a couple's prayers. Prayer is blocked until the obstacle is removed.
Notice that Peter's advice was not the line you and I have heard so often: "If you have problems, you should pray together." Peter says, "Don't cause problems, otherwise you will not be able to pray together."
The Bible does not regard prayer as a last resort to accomplish what we cannot manage otherwise. Prayer is the door through which we receive God's grace. When that door is closed, we simply have no life.
Husbands and wives must live in peace with each other so that they can always pray together.