I'm welcoming a guest blogger this week as I am out of town for a few days with family. My friend, Julie Salva, has agreed to share some of her "Love"ly thoughts with you as we continue our countdown to Valentine's Day. Julie has a heart for Christ that shows in everything she does - Mom, Wife, Bible Teacher, Business Owner - she's a busy lady! And she also has the enviable ability to rock a pair of high heels with any outfit.
That's courageous in my book!
Enjoy hearing Julie's heart this week as she shares with you.
With a Courageous Heart,
“Now go and tell his disciples, including Peter, that Jesus is going ahead of you to Galilee. You will see him there, just as he told you before He died." -Mark 16:7
So, I had just messed up again…hard to believe!
In fact, I messed up with the same thing I ALWAYS seemed to mess up with…again and again and again. I don’t know about you, but I have a “thorn in my flesh” (to borrow from Paul) that just binds me up continually! As I pray, I tell God that I’ve got it this time, I won’t mess up with this again, that THIS time….I have control, no need to worry about me ANYMORE!
Well, guess what…..I WILL mess up again with my issue, and you’ll mess up with yours! It’s enough to want to throw in the towel sometimes, don’t you think? At least, that’s what the devil would sure like me to do!
Before I beat myself up too badly though, let’s think of Peter.
You know Peter, don’t you? He’s the one who walked on water towards Christ (of course he took his eyes off Him and sank...but that’s another devotion!).
In fact, in Mark 5, Peter SAW Jesus raise a child from the dead! If ANYONE knew that Christ was the Son of God, it was Peter. He said it in Matthew 16:16 - “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God”.
But......in this verse from Mark, Peter has just denied Christ three short days ago. In fact, Peter denied Christ AFTER Jesus had told him he would….you could say he had a heads up!
Can you imagine how ashamed Peter felt? In fact, we don’t really need to imagine, because scripture tells us he broke down and cried (Mark 14:72). I think that Peter was so disappointed in himself, because he had done exactly what he had told Jesus he wouldn’t do.
How hopeless he must have felt.
Yet, the phrase in today's key verse, “including Peter”, is one of my favorite phrases of hope in the bible! It tells me that Christ KNEW that Peter needed to see Him.....that Peter needed to know he was forgiven.
In fact, if you’ll permit me to “guess”, I’m pretty sure I know how Peter felt. Hopeless.
See, I can relate, because I’ve felt that, every time I mess up.....again. But praise Jesus....I don’t stay there! Mark 16:7 reminds me that even after I mess up AGAIN, Jesus is still looking for me, counting me as one of His own, and specifically wanting me to join Him in fellowship again.
Although I may want to remove myself from His presence because I am ashamed, He specifically seeks me out and gently reminds me that I am His, and that His plans include me.
I’m willing to bet they include you too.
So, my Love-ly thought....Forgiveness.