Thursday, June 2, 2011

Do You Love Me?

Out of all the biographies and accounts of the different ancient prophets and apostles I have recently come to really appreciate Peter's history. If we can think back to one of the earlier contacts between Christ and Peter we find that Peter was in his boat and was casting his nets in the Sea of Galilee because they were fishers. (Mark 1:16) And then Jesus says to Peter, in a sense, "Leave all that you are and what you have been and come follow me and I will make you into what you are supposed to be." Then it says, "And straightway they forsook their nets, and followed him." (Mark 1:18). I think it's interesting that they didn't just leave their net's behind to later pick them up again. Instead, they renounced and completely abandoned their former selves in hopes of become true disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ. So throughout all of the gospels we find that peter excels in some points and falters in others just like any normal or even above-average human being. But, after Christ's crucifixion the disciples are kind lost a little bewildered and are not too sure what they are supposed to do now. Peter being the chief apostle is the one who is supposed to have the ideas, well he thinks about it and says, "You know it's been fun. It's been a wonderful 36 months, but I guess we'll just go back to what we know. I'll go back to fishing with James and John." Well, they do.

 Peter, James, and John go back to being fishers and one night they are out on the Sea of Tiberias and are trying their hardest to catch some fish. But, sometime in the morning, because you go fishing when it's dark, they were still trying to catch something and they've just been having awful luck and they are exhausted and are almost done, when they see a Man on the shore by a fire and the Man asks them, "Have you caught anything?" They answer sadly, "No we haven't." The Man was Jesus and He said to them, "Well, try the other side of your boat and you'll have some success." So they do they throw the net's over the right side this time and low and behold they got a catch a massive catch at that. A catch so big they couldn't get it into the boat, it's a miracle in itself that the net didn't break. But, in probably shock and awe they look at that Stranger who had given the great advice when John the Beloved says, "Peter... It's the Lord." Immediately Peter jumps into he sea and swims to the shore, when he get's there he finds that the Lord had been cooking them breakfast. A long tiresome night with no food and the Lord provided, but after eating and some small talk the later looks at Peter and asks him, "Peter, do you love me more than these fish?" Peter, probably chuckled and was like, "Of course Lord." Jesus then says, "Then feed my lambs." But, he didn't stop there he again asks, "Peter, do you love me more than these fish?" In some form of confusion Peter probably hesitantly answered, "Well, yes Lord I just told you I did." Jesus answers, "Then feed my lambs." Again Jesus asks, "Peter do you love me?" In what had to be a desperate plea to show the Saviour of his true love he answer's, "I love you more than everything, you know that." Jesus then gives him an answer that changes Peter forever, "Then feed my sheep. When I called you to follow me and forsake your net's I wasn't talking temporally I meant forever! You need to become what I intended you to become. Which means no more fishing."

Sometimes we fall into the same situation as Peter, we are changed or asked to change in what we think will be temporarily when in fact those changes were meant to last forever, to permanent. Christ intends for us to become like Him and that doesn't come through a quick fix. It takes a lifetime. We need to forsake the things which Christ has asked and follow Him not only with our feet, but with our hearts. As we do this we will find greater comfort and greater peace from Him who gives it. This isn't to say we will never experience trials after we decide to follow Him, in fact it is the opposite. We need to expect trials and expect that we will overcome them through the Lord. Let's not just wish or want, but become what we can be and what the Lord needs us to be.

1 comment:

  1. Consecration has been on my mind a TON lately. When Christ asks us to follow Him, He doesn't mean partially or mostly. We are expected to devote all of ourselves to Him.