“The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone.” (Matthew 21:42)

When we think of cornerstones, we may think of noble figures like Abraham, David, or Jeremiah. We may think of heroic saints like Mother Teresa or John of the Cross. And, of course, we think of Jesus. All of these figures stand out in our imagination as people with almost superhuman talents, skills, and dedication to their causes. But sal­vation history is also filled with the stories of many people whose lives didn’t start off so well, but who did become vital cornerstones for the people of God.

What about you? Have you ever thought of yourself as a cornerstone? Joseph’s brothers rejected him and sold him into slavery. But his humil­ity and his willingness to rely on God allowed him to rise above these con­ditions and become the cornerstone to save his family and all of Egypt.

Francis of Assisi was little more than a wandering party boy at first. And when he did try to follow the Lord, he was rejected and disinher­ited by his father. But because of his reliance on God, Francis became one of the most important corner­stones for the church in the Middle Ages. In these instances and more, it wasn’t the rejection that was crucial but the humility and steadfastness of the people who were rejected. That’s what turned them into pillars of faith and witnesses to the gospel.

Are you ready to become a cor­nerstone? Maybe you think that God can’t use you because you’re not good enough, smart enough, or heroic enough. But we don’t need to be powerful or brave to serve God. We just need to be humble and teachable. Or maybe you’re afraid that you will be rejected, as Joseph and Francis were. But God promises that he will never allow us to be tested beyond our abil­ity to endure—provided we lean on him and his power. So, confident in his provision, and eager to build up his church, let’s lay our lives before the Lord and tell him we want to dedicate our lives to advancing his kingdom in this world.

“Lord, make me like you, a pillar of faith for those around me. I want to be more willing to rely on you. Open my eyes and ears so that I may be more alert to your calling.”

Genesis 37:3-4,12-13,17-28; Psalm 105:16-21