Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Oh Peter


How I see myself in him. Last year at this time I was much like Peter when he saw the Lord walking on the water. The storm was all around him and while the other disciples stayed in the boat it was Peter who asked the Lord if he could come. Jesus answered him with "come".

 I wonder how many steps Peter took before the wind and the storm got the better of him.  I'd like to think that if it would have been me in that boat, that I would have walked boldly into the arms of Jesus. My life so far tells me different. Many times I have run to Jesus and found comfort and peace in His word. Only to see it slip away as I look at the circumstances in my life. Just like Peter, walking in faith until he saw the waves and felt the power of the wind. Yes, I've learned from Peter. He began to sink and while fear had a grip on him he called out to Jesus "Lord save me!" I've  done the same and each time felt the arms of my savior lift me up.

I laughed to myself as I thought what if I was Peter and he a modern day man reading about me and learning from me. I can certainly see myself saying "no Jesus, you will never wash my feet" then upon hearing the words of Jesus "If I do not wash you, you have no share with me". Then Peter "Lord, not my feet only but also my hands and head!" All or nothing! I hear the words of my sweet mother "Tina, you are so dramatic!" Something I heard more than a few times in my youth.

Who can overlook his passion as he drew his sword and sliced the ear off of the high priest's servant. There were many soldiers present, perhaps hundreds. Peter was prepared to fight. His courage was misplaced. It was not what his Lord needed from him at the time. Had Jesus not rebuked him, he most certainly would have been killed.

All of  Peter's good intentions outlined in scripture are usually overshadowed by the denial of his Lord and savior. Three times, as Jesus foretold " "Will you lay down your life for me? Truly, truly I say to you, the rooster will not crow till you have denied me three times".

Once again Peter allowed fear to get a grip on him as he looked to his circumstances. Jesus had been arrested, led away and was in the midst of the pharisees suffering false accusations, humiliation and beatings. John 18:15,16 Simon Peter followed Jesus, and so did another disciple. Since that disciple was known to the high priest, he entered with Jesus into the court of the high priest, but Peter stood outside at the door. He followed Jesus, but at a safe distance.

It was here that he first denies Jesus. He was so gripped in fear that even a lowly servant girl caused him to deny the Lord. The passion that had fueled his courage in brandishing a sword in the face of roman soldiers had disappeared. Now he was consumed with self preservation and fear.

the third denial

Luke 22:60-62 
But Peter said, "Man, I do not know what you are talking about". And immediately while he was still speaking the rooster crow. And the Lord turned and looked at Peter. And Peter remembered the saying of the Lord, how he had said to him "Before the rooster crows today, you will deny me three times" And he went out and wept bitterly.

No matter how many times I read these passages I still feel such a heaviness in my heart for Peter. Too many times I have let my emotions run amok while cowering against the waves. I have made decisions based on my feelings in the moment rather than look to Jesus for direction and strength. I can only imagine the heartache Peter felt as he looked into the eyes of his friend, his Savior and Lord knowing he had failed him.

Peter's bitter tears paved the way of repentance and restoration. Peter continued to follow after Jesus. After the resurrection Jesus appeared to the disciples, in the book of John there is an account of Peter "throwing himself into the sea" to go after Jesus. Yes, once again I can see myself here!

Peter went on to lead many people, thousands to the Lord. He lived by the power of the Holy Spirit. This is the Peter I want to be like. It is good to know he continued and that God helped him to harness all that fervor and passion for good.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Multitude Monday

holy experience

21. The saints who take time to diligently study and prepare bible study materials that help me learn more about my Heavenly Father and His kingdom.

22. An earthly family to share life's burdens with.

23. An earthly father who loves me, whom I love with my whole heart

23. A mother who taught me how to be a good wife and mother, who is full of patience, love and grace.

24. my dear husband who works hard to provide for our family

25. The testimony of Peter, I see myself in him sometimes

26.  SPRING!

27. running into old friends who care and do not judge

28. financial provision for higher education

29. health

30. abundance!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Multitude Monday

11. A deck on which I can enjoy the warmth of spring and birds to the feeder and bath

12. The Holy Spirit within me who stopped me from sharing an angry word

13. A sister to share with, to laugh with ... I love you Maggie

14. Two kittens, a cat and a rebellious little dog to share life with

15. Bible study leaders that take the time to prepare and lead

16. the finances to provide needed medical care for those mentioned in #4

17. Oreo cookies

18. sleeping until I am fully rested

19. a young man who waits with a contrite and hopeful heart

20. grace

Monday, March 8, 2010

My First Multitude Monday list

1. My salvation in Christ Jesus

2. the ease at which I can move about, health and wellness

3. a helpmate who loves me, cares for me and makes me laugh

4. children whom I love dearly

5. comfort ... I have all I need and so much more

6. the word of God and the freedom to pursue it openly

7. a beautiful day full of sun ... it's been a bitter winter

8. quiet time to seek Him and reflect on what He has done

9. friends who have come alongside when i needed them most

10. a new community of brothers and sisters in Christ