Theme of the Week: Out of Hibernation
Bible Verse: “You aren’t one of this man’s disciples too, are you?” she asked Peter. He replied, “I am not.” John 18:17
Scripture Reading: John 18:15-18, 25-27
Peter is completely relatable. I think he’s meant to be that way. He represents all of us when it comes to how we follow Jesus. Fits and starts. Mistakes and triumphs. Anger and compassion. There are many moments in Peter’s story in which we can easily see ourselves. But there are others to which we’d rather not admit any sort of connection. Peter’s action on the night of Jesus’s arrest is probably one of those moments of the latter kind.
After what had to be a confusing and emotionally draining night already (try to imagine yourself in all the situations Peter found himself in that night: disagreeing with Jesus, being corrected by him, falling asleep on Jesus, attacking the priest’s servant, and finally abandoning Him when He was arrested), Peter finds himself in the courtyard of the High Priest being “accused” of being a follower of Jesus.
You probably know what happened, three times he denied being Jesus’s follower. Not a thing we hope to identify with. But what if we looked a little closer at ourselves?
I’ve never denied being a follower of Jesus when I have been asked directly. But I know I have not taken every opportunity to identify with Him. There have been times when I have been vague or general. I’m not sure why. Every time, I regret it. The knowledge of the fact that I have chosen not to identify as one of Jesus’s followers eats at my conscience. Even if it’s not the same kind of denial as Peter, it feels like it. It feels like a betrayal. How would I feel if Jesus said that He didn’t know me?
Following Jesus is difficult. It is not for the timid. It requires us to stand beside Him in the direct and the indirect. Following Jesus means, like Peter did at first, leaving everything else behind.
Prayer: God, please show me when familiarity with the words of the Bible stops me from seeing you. Allow the Spirit to work in my heart and mind to reveal you to me.
Reflection: When was the last time you found something new in a familiar story of Scripture? Ask God to help you read Scripture well today.
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