Motivtional Moments  print

Sat 1. Jul 17 13:51

Devotion - "Thou art Peter"

“And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.” – Mat 16:18 (NIV)

One of the most defining moments in my life came in my third year at secondary school. In my electronics class I would often sit in the back doing just enough to get through each lesson, hoping not to be seen by the teacher and never drawing attention to myself. I was not sure about the subject, and could not really see myself having a future in that field, so I simply drifted through week after week. Sometime during the term, the teacher called me aside and asked me what was my plan for this subject and with my life; I honestly did not have an answer. He cautioned me about my attitude towards his class and, to school in general, and challenged me to apply myself or risk not being entered for CXC.

Although I cannot remember every detail of that conversation, it shook me to the core. I realized I was ‘asleep’ and had become comfortable just hiding in an area that I regarded as a weakness. By no means am I attempting to compare my experience with that of the Apostle Peter but I can only imagine what I experienced in that moment was similar the awakening Peter had when Jesus uttered those famous words to him. That “You are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church.” Of the many lessons that can be learnt from this passage, one which stands out to me is “it’s not always how you start, but how you finish.” Even though I did not gain a grade one in electronics as I had hoped, I was one of the top performers in the class and due to that success went on to pursue a career in Information Technology.

On deeper observation, Jesus saw in Peter something he probably did not even see in himself. He took a lowly, presumably rugged and hot-tempered fisherman and made him into an iconic figure in the history of the church and a fisher of souls for the Kingdom of God. When last have we paused to see people, not simply for who they are physically but who they could be? When last have we given a friend, family member or colleague a word of encouragement? A few good words cost us nothing but can be of great value to someone and can possibly change their life. Despite this, we find it almost unbearable to praise, compliment or reaffirm others as Jesus did for Peter on that day.

This same Peter, later denied Christ, not once but three times (John 18:16-27).  Yet being the rock that he was, he did not allow that moment to define him. As we can only imagine, the words Jesus spoke resonated deep within Peter’s soul and he pressed on to become the boldest and most outspoken Apostle for Christ. Later preaching one of the most powerful sermons in history, which saw 3000 persons saved on the day of Pentecost. Peter did not allow one discouraging event to shape his life but he believed the words spoken over him. That we was Peter, the Rock!
Let us pray

Heavenly Father, as we celebrate this year’s Patronal Festival we reflect on your Apostle Peter. May we embody his spirit of commitment, dedication, perseverance and resilience as we pursue your will in the earth. Give us the ability to see all persons as you see them Lord, may we not be idle in our speech but speak words of wisdom, encouragement and admonish each other to the glory of your holy name. This we pray in the name of your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.