The word “inheritance” means that you get something that belongs to an older generation, usually at the death of a family member. My mother, for example, inherited some property after my grandfather passed away. The inheritance that Peter describes in today’s passage, however, is a little bit different.
“By his great mercy he has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who are being protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.” (1 Peter 1: 3-5)
Read that again for a second. Through Jesus’s infinite mercy, we are given a new birth, a living hope, protection by the power of God, and life after death. The inheritance we gain through a life in Christ is immaterial. These things will never rust, rot, get dusty, or eaten by termites. No one can take these things away from us. Our faith is more precious than gold and can endure the trials and tribulations that the world inflicts upon us.
Even though God is invisible to our eyes, we can always ask Him to be present with us in our prayers. We may not even feel Him with us, but He is always there.
Today’s passage also reminds me of a verse from the Gospel of Matthew:
“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal; but store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Mt 6:19-21)
We all like to collect things. My brother likes action figures. My mom has an entire closet filled with handbags and purses. I like collecting postcards and things that have some kind of memory behind them. However, the things we collect are just that. Things. As much as love as we give to these things, they will eventually go away.
But God’s love for us? Jesus’s infinite mercy? A new life in Heaven? These things will last forever. It’s these things that keep us through the good times and the bad. It’s what gave hope to the martyrs of the church, like St. Joan of Arc and St. Maximilian Kolbe.
As long as we serve God, these wonderful, immaterial consolations become our inheritance.I remember how I volunteered at a retreat and the heartbreak I secretly carried with me at the time. However, one song that constantly played throughout the retreat was Aaron Schust’s
“My Hope is in You.” In spite of my broken heart, God gave me hope that I would eventually get over it. Eventually, I learned from it and moved on. I included this song in the playlist for this Bible study. I pray that the song will give you as much hope as it did for me.
Have hope in the Lord, dearest sisters in Christ!