Simon Peter asked, “Lord, where are you going?” And Jesus replied, “You can’t go with me now, but you will follow me later.” John 13:36 NLT
I walked along the Journey to the Cross last night, and at every station took in the few words in the accompanying scripture selections and wrote them in my journal. Step by step inviting the Lord to renew this walk for me.
Then I stopped at Gethsemane. The pressing place. I heard Jesus ask them to stay awake and pray, over and over. As I read the selections I felt the squeeze of the angst in which Peter wanted to protect the Lord. To prevent His arrest. For things to go the way he thought they should. And then I read these words,
So Jesus said to Peter, “Put your sword into the sheath. Shall I not drink the cup which My Father Has given Me?” John 18:11 NKJV
God the Father. Allowed the Messiah’s arrest, beating, death, burial…. What? The God who is love. How could He allow that to happen to His Son?
Peter never could have understood that. Unlike the others who ran in the opposite direction He followed the soldiers who took His Messiah. Imagine what drew him to follow.
Yes Peter, he denied the Lord. Three times, just as the Master had said. But he followed him. When everyone else was running away. When the breath seemed hard to take in, and the fear was in his face as others wanted to string him up he denied Jesus. But he stayed.
Well I am not sure what Peter was thinking. But I believe that Peter heard echoing in his mind these words,
“Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” Matthew 5:12 NKJV
Days later, three long days of defeat in Peter’s life find him in a boat fishing. But not for men. Nets searching for fish, but I think more. Fishing to understand how all of this could have happened. Trying to remember every word the Master had spoken. Trying to wrap his mind around why he had denied Jesus, not one but three times.
This week, this Holy week, I am in a pressing place. Where my faith is being squeezed. Where I found myself doubting. Where have I have fallen from Holy. Fishing for answers because fishing for men while church planting has left my nets empty.
Unlike Peter, I know that Jesus rose up from the grave. That He restores the ones who have doubted, and denied him. Those who followed him, and are now lost it seems. That He will come walking along the shore, and once again tell the one who denied him to strengthen His brethren. To fish for men.
This Easter, have you followed Jesus to a place you can’t go with Him? To a work that only He can accomplish? Do you feel the breath leave your lungs as if you have been pierced through by fallen expectations, and in need of His holiness to carry you? Me too.
Beloved, He will come. He will rise and we will be floored when He storms our shores with food for our spiritual bellies and a heavenly mandate. We can’t see Him now, but soon……..
On Thursdays I am linking up with others in search of Spiritual Whitespace. Need a strong cup of encouragement? Click on the image below to fill up.
Be on the lookout for a new community link up that will be starting here soon. A place where our cups runneth over with living water. ❤ Melinda