"Now who is there to harm you if you are zealous for what is good?" 1 Peter 3:13 ESV
At first, this may seem an odd question. The disciples all suffered persecution, and it is generally believed all but one were killed because of their belief. The author continues, "But even if you should suffer for righteousness' sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled, but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect (14,15)".
The message is not a promise that we will not suffer harm but that when faced with these situations, we should be ready to defend our faith. We are to respond not defensively and with aggressiveness, but like Christ in gentleness and with respect, "But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you. (Luke 6:27-28)" We have the assurance in Christ, that we cannot really be harmed, because our hope lies beyond this current life to the eternal.
Gracious and loving God, we give you thanks for your many blessings. When we suffer, you are there through the Holy Spirit to comfort us and provide peace. Please help us respond to everyone, including those who despise us and wish us harm, with gentleness and respect. May our responses glorify you. In the name of Christ Jesus, we pray. Amen.