This morning I want to talk to you directly ad in that day when God had you in his mind. Just as he had the thought before you were born and the plans He had for you and later revealed. You are not alone, we are all in this great plan together. Remember there are vessels of different degrees and of honour and dishonour. Pay careful attention to what the word is saying and forget the interpretation of man, or what people will say. You are either in the plan or out the will of God.
God had you specifically in mind when he created you and called you to follow him. You are custom-designed for your calling. Therefore, you are a peculiar child with a special purpose. Hallelujah. But when you face the difficulty of your calling, you may look at others and be tempted to wonder why they don’t seem to bear the same burdens you do. Don’t be discouraged; in John 21, the Apostle Peter faced the same temptation. The simple answer is that even though we are of the same handmade, we are of different construction. Therefore, I urge you to be you.
“What About this Man?”
After the resurrected Jesus served his sleep-deprived fisherman-disciples a seaside breakfast of miracle fish, he took Peter on a walk down the beach. Jesus wanted to tell Peter a few important things directly before Jesus parted physically from him for the last time in this age. John trailed them, about ten yards behind. Notice where we are going with this story or text. Look at the intimate Jesus with Peter. He wants to tell him somethings privately because He was to depart from them. I said privately, but there is always a nosy one that will spy to know what is going on as in the case of John.
Toward the end of their conversation, Jesus dropped a bombshell on Peter: “Truly, truly, I say to you, when you were young, you used to dress yourself and walk wherever you wanted, but when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and another will dress you and carry you where you do not want to go.” Then Jesus, as only he could do, peered right into Peter’s soul and said, “Follow me.” What a message for this hour when you come face to face with the one you called Master and Lord. Your leader, brother, shepherd and friend.
Peter had already been dreading Jesus’s final departure, wondering how this small, fearful band of disciples would survive without him. Peter wondered how he would survive. Now Jesus informed him that he wasn’t going to survive. Peter was going to die for Jesus. Only this time Peter issued no over-confident proclamation like he had during the Passover meal. Now he knew how weak he really was. Left to himself, he was a coward. Don’t you find yourself in these situation sometimes? It is good to be under the wings of your parents, your Bishop, leader, brother….aaaawwww, but when you are on your own it is a different story. You don’t have far to look but within yourself. Just at your shadow and then see how coward you really are.
But Peter remembered that he would not be left to himself like an orphan; Jesus, though gone, would somehow come to him in the future (John 14:18). Peter believed this. Jesus had never once failed to keep a promise. But how Jesus would come to him at the moment of his execution, Peter could not conceive. He already felt lonely. I tell you that this final journey is not an easy one especially when you are left alone and the pressures of life comes on you. You look around and there is no one to stand with you. Loneliness steps in and you began to feel helpless. Remember that Jesus was not just in the vessel, He was in the midst of the storm. He has the remote for the storm.
And Peter wondered why Jesus hadn’t spoken of other disciples’ deaths. Was he the only one who would have to die? Peter looked around for the others and he saw John, who was walking just where the cool surf gently pushed up and bathed his feet. Peter knew how Jesus loved John, and he wondered if Jesus was going to spare John the cost that he was asking Peter to pay. Gesturing back, Peter asked Jesus, “Lord, what about this man?”
Jesus’s brow furrowed as he watched two gulls quarrel over a dead fish. Then he looked at Peter and responded with his familiar tender firmness, “If it is my will that he remain until I come, what is that to you? You follow me!” I long to hear those words and I told my Patriarch every time we have an audience that I will go the journey alone. If all walk away I will follow Thee my Saviour. I rather do it now that to seek shelter to the end of my journey.
Your servant and brother,
+ Sir Godfrey Gregg
Archbishop and Presiding Prelate
Administrator and Apostolic Head
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