Can God Get Glory from My Life?
by Dominique Henderson
It is pretty easy to feel like this. When I get in this state I often realize that my anger and frustration stem from my inability to meet my own expectations. There seems no better biblical example than the Apostle Peter to compare how I feel when like this. As a Christian I have realized that life is not a bed a roses, a walk in the park, or any of those other pleasant colloquialisms that are often used when describing the “easy life”. For those of you following along, I have for the past few weeks been in a state of flux about my emotions and feelings. For a while during the past 6-8 week period I have felt as though God was not speaking to me the way that I was used to hearing. I’ve shared these feelings with my close friends and companions only to get encouragement which has helped me tremendously. So, when you get like this you can know that you haven’t blown it with God he is right there still loving and caring for you. He knows your name because you are a child of his. You should always realize that in trying to be effective for the kingdom of God, you will suffer persecution, ridicule and a vehement attack plan from your enemy-SATAN. In looking at Peter’s situation, I observe (1) his relationship with Jesus, (2) his company, and (3) his sacrifice. Let us see what we can glean from Peter’s past to help with our today and our future.
I’m not trying to put these in any particular order, but obviously a relationship with Jesus is foundational. Getting through life is hard enough, without Jesus it has to be near impossible. When I look at my own life (and that of my peers) I really don’t know how I would have remained sane without my relationship with Christ. As an everlasting truth, I know I can fall back on what the Word says about me no matter how low I get or how bad I’ve messed up. “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come” (2 Corinthians 5:17--NAS)-an immutable fact declared by Paul to encourage young believers in their true identity. You see as Satan goes about his ways and strategies to deter us from our God-given purpose, he employs methods that sometimes confuse us as to our true identity. We have a crisis of who we actually belong to because we associate our actions with our identity. Clearly we cannot continue in a deliberate and habitual pattern of sinful living and claim to be one of God’s children. That is not what I’m saying. But I am saying that in my life I have been challenged to keep the faithful promise of God to never leave me nor forsake me, when Satan throws every lie in front of me that says that God has deserted me. It may come in the form of something like this, “if you are a child of God why have you been hurt by people in the church?” On one hand I can say, that’s right. How can this be? Am I not in the right church, am I doing something wrong? All these questions put the focus on me and not God. But on the other hand I can go to God and say, Father I have been hurt by those in your family please help me to reconcile this difference and love my brother or sister regardless of that. The latter response recognizes my inability to do this without God’s grace and power. This is the type of reliance that comes through relationship with him. Getting back to our focus character, Peter understood relationship. Throughout the gospels we see Peter’s character as one that was demonstrative about his position with Christ. Though he ended up denying Christ in his darkest hour, Peter’s loyalty to his Savior is undeniable. I, as the case with Peter, sometimes have to allow my heart to catch up with my words. By that I mean Peter really did want to die for the Lord if it came to it (see John 13:36-38), but he had not got to the point of surrendering all to God. Earlier in my Christian walk I made God many promises of what I would do if he blessed me to do this or that. But as I matured in the faith I realized that God was giving me opportunities to show my devotion to him and when it came down to it I was forfeiting those opportunities because I loved myself more than him. Peter realized this when the rooster crowed. However, as I am trying to articulate today in this devotional, God sees us as he wants us to be not as we are or as we see ourselves (see Philippians 1:6). So when the rooster crows in our life we don’t have to feel like we’ve let God down. As Donnie McClurkin sang “we fall down but we get up…” we can start serving God again. Just as Peter was encouraged by Jesus to feed his lambs (see John 21:15-17) we can be encouraged by that same command.
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