Jesus not only forgives. He restores. Peter had blown it big time by denying that he even knew Jesus. Not once. Not twice. But three times. The same thing happens today and in more times after they become fortified.
It’s not an accident that Jesus asks him three times if he loves him. It’s as if he is giving Peter an opportunity to confess it openly for each of the three denials. Peter responds each time and finally says: “Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you.”
That’s it. That’s what Peter needed to do. Get it out in the open. Make it absolutely clear. And boldly proclaim where he stood. My God this is exactly what we need to do in this hour. Too many people work under cover to climb on the shoulders of others to get to the top and deny the origin of their existence. Do you have to challenge them in the public for an answer? No leave them and God will grant the reward.
Jesus knew exactly what Peter needed, not just to be forgiven, but to be restored. Hence the topic for this morning and my emphasis is restoration. Jesus could have said, “You’re forgiven. It’s over. Don’t even think about it.” But instead, he goes back and makes Peter work through the issue, makes him face this past and deal with it. Makes him talk with the Lord directly and honestly. My brothers and sisters if we come face to face with our past what will be your answer. There are times in our lives that we have to face head on in order to get pass to the other side. Sometimes your past is the only way of escape for you.
Sometimes we miss out on real restoration because we want to take the easy route. “Forgive and forget and get it over with. Move on.” No, that is not what God is working through His Son. Behold I have set before you an open door and it is your choice to enter or stay out. Peter could have gotten in a rage and walked away from Jesus. He chose to confront his past and meet with Jesus head on. Hallelujah and today I am glad for He is working on me in this very hour as I write to you.
But sometimes God has to do a work in our lives to remold, reshape, and then restore. Peter experienced this painful but necessary work of restoration. So my brothers and sisters what I am asking you today is to reach out to Almighty God and ask Him to break you, melt you, mold and shape you into the very likeness He wants you to be in from the very beginning. We often sing the song, break me,melt me and mold me, Spirit of the living God fall fresh on me. We all need it today.
The good news is that once he went through the process, he was able to be restored to meaningful and important service: While some are asking God to work in their lives, others are allowing the devil to destroy theirs and others. Look on the brighter side of life and the service you can offer to uplift others. This is not the time to sit idly and forget because the “blood of Jesus washes away our sins”. There is much more to it for you to get to the place of PPP. (Peace Perfect Peace)
Jesus said, “Feed my sheep. I tell you the truth, when you were younger you dressed yourself and went where you wanted; but when you are old you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go.” Jesus said this to indicate the kind of death by which Peter would glorify God. Then he said to him, “Follow me!”
Peter would go beyond just being forgiven. He was restored. He was given important work to do: feed God’s flock. And he would face severe trials and eventual martyrdom.
God takes no shortcuts when he wants to mold someone to use for his glory. He not only forgives, but he restores. But it isn’t easy. It’s hard. But in the end, it’s good. God I am saying today to use me like you did Peter but I want You to take me through the process where I will no longer be myself. You being in me the hope of all glory.
Your servant and brother,
+ Sir Godfrey Gregg
Archbishop and Presiding Prelate
Administrator and Apostolic Head
Follow me on Twitter @ArchbishopGregg
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