Wednesday, April 5, 2017

How Well Do You Know Yourself?

As we approach the Easter holiday, I've been  reading the accounts of the events leading up to Jesus' crucifixion and resurrection in the Bible.  Today, as I read parts of Mark chapter 14, I wondered about Peter, one of Jesus' best buddies for his last three years.  Peter, the big-talking, burly buffoon-like fisherman.

Peter has experienced so much with Jesus in the three years he has followed Jesus.  Miracles of all sorts - healings, resurrections from the dead, violent storms calmed, whopping catches of fish, unbelievable food multiplications, walking on the waves, and so much more.  Oh, to have had these experiences right in the physical presence of Jesus!

Yet Jesus knew, when the pressure would come, that even after being through all of that with him,  Peter would deny knowing Jesus.  Jesus describes exactly how this denial will happen.  Peter thinks he won't do so and vehemently denies that it will happen as Jesus says.

Yet it does, for Jesus knows Peter better than Peter knows himself.  The scene goes down just as Jesus has said it will, and Peter does deny Jesus three times.

Let's step back and look at the larger picture, though.

1.  Jesus wanted Peter with him in the Garden of Gethsemane as he prayed and awaited his arrest.  He loved Peter so much.

2.  Jesus knew all along that Peter would deny him.

3.  Later, Jesus placed Peter in charge of the new church, in spite of Peter's shortcomings and failures.

The reality is that He knows our thoughts, our inclinations, our history, our flaws, our failures, our everything.  In spite of all of that and just like Peter, He wants us with him, AND he trusts us to accomplish important things for Him.

How well do you think you know yourself?

Jesus knows us better than we know ourselves.

Our past, our flaws, and our failures do NOT disqualify us!

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