1 Peter 1:3-9 (NRSV)
Verse 3Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! By his great mercy he has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, Verse 4and into an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, Verse 5who are being protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
Verse 6In this you rejoice, even if now for a little while you have had to suffer various trials, Verse 7so that the genuineness of your faith-being more precious than gold that, though perishable, is tested by fire-may be found to result in praise and glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. Verse 8Although you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and rejoice with an indescribable and glorious joy, Verse 9for you are receiving the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls.
Where do you find joy? A friend of mine was telling me about how much fun she had when her grandchildren went hunting for Easter eggs. She was able to relive for me all the events of that Easter morning. She related how the little ones were allowed to find the eggs in plain sight, while the older kids had to work for their rewards by looking in places high and low. She recalled all these details even though she was legally blind. She could rejoice and love those precious children without seeing them. Those to whom Peter was writing needed to be reminded that the resurrection of Jesus the Christ was their inheritance, even if they could not yet see it. Their current trials would enhance their faith, and, in their blindness, they continue to love Jesus and believe in him. Their love and belief gave them the ability to rejoice with “indescribable and glorious joy.”
Gracious and ever-present God, help us to see. Allow us to comprehend your love in all of creation. Open our eyes to the needs of those close to us and in distant places who suffer at the hands of others or because of environmental disaster. Give us the ability to rejoice and share joy with all. Amen.