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The Upper Room Devotion for Monday, May 1, 2023, was written by Doug Wingert

of Arizona.



4 Come to him, a living stone, though rejected by mortals yet chosen and precious in God's sight, and 5 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. 6 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." 7 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," 8 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. 9 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. 10 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.

Peter 2:4-10 NRSV

18 And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not prevail against it.

Matthew 16:18 NRSV



As a child, I developed a fascination with rocks. I would wander the desert areas around my home picking up rocks of all shapes and sizes. My rock collections would line the window sills at home or pile up on the back porch. I could hold a rock in my hand and imagine that it may have been formed in the fire of a mighty volcano or through the pressure of an ancient sea. I also tried to imagine how God put all these things in motion, resulting in the rock I held in my hand. In the quoted verse from Matthew, Jesus recognized the inner strength of his disciple and calls him Peter, which translates to “rock” in Greek. Even solid rock has its cracks, flaws, and imperfections. But despite his imperfections, Peter went on to spread the good news wherever he went. What about me? I tend to have far more flaws and imperfections than I would like to admit. Still, I ask myself, Am I strong enough, like a solid rock, to be the foundation of love and forgiveness that Jesus has called me to be? Thankfully, through the grace of God, I do not have to be perfect to fulfill God’s purposes for my life.




1 Peter 2:4-5 states: “4 Come to him, a living stone, though rejected by mortals yet chosen and precious in God's sight, and 5 like living stones, let yourselves be built into a spiritual house.” It may be difficult to believe that we are rocks, so solid that God has chosen to construct a “spiritual house” and a dwelling place for God’s Spirit. Many of us, like Doug asserts in his reflection, can only see our faults, flaws, and failures; deeming ourselves unworthy to be used for divine purpose. Yet, God has not chosen to use us because we are without blemish, but because we are flawed, so that the power of God’s redemptive love is evident. May God continue to work through us to bless others, despite our faults and failures, that we might respond to God’s unmerited grace with lives of reverent devotion.

-Pastor Anthony




God of grace, guide us on a path that leads us to an unshakable faith, as solid as a rock. In the name of Jesus, the living cornerstone. Amen.

- Doug Wingert


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