I was power-trimming weeds beneath a large tree in our backyard when I felt a painful, burning jab to the back of my skull. Turning, I noticed several hornets buzzing around me. Having been already stung by one, I fled the scene. Later that night I discovered I had bumped the hornets’ watermelon-sized nest with my head! A sting had snapped me out of my clueless state, one that could have resulted in me being swarmed and stung repeatedly.

The prophet Micah was called to do something similar—to wake God’s people out of their clueless state. They had their heads down—ignoring God and His call—living unjust, self-centered, spiritually apathetic lives (Micah 1:5, 2:2). As one commentator put it, “With passionate forthrightness, [Micah] attacks the social evils [religious corruption, social oppression, economic injustice, etc.] of his day. His stubborn refusal to float on the tide of his social environment, and his courageous stand for his convictions of God’s truth, must commend Micah to . . . every age.”

Micah brought God’s stinging words: Judgment was coming through their enemies the Assyrians (Micah 5:1). But he also gave them hope in One who would come from Bethlehem and “be the source of peace” (Micah 5:2,5). The prophet’s words described a “Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6)—revealing to the people of that age and ours that One would come and “lead his flock” and “be highly honored around the world” (Micah 5:4).

Jesus, the One who fulfilled that prophecy, provides what we need to passionately swim against the currents of social ills today. This is no time for floating. Let’s lift our heads and find our voice as Christ gives us the power and strength to live out His justice, truth, and love.

NLT 365-day reading plan passage for today: Matthew 15:32–16:12