Mercy Street Church of Christ
Abilene, TX
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You are Peter

You are Peter. (Matthew 16:18)

Have you ever wanted to be someone else? Walter Mitty, the character in a well-known short story, is a bored suburbanite who imagines himself in such exciting roles as a Navy pilot, a famous surgeon, and a dangerous spy. In these imaginary situations, he is stronger, more courageous, and more decisive than in real life.

You might wonder if Peter had ever fantasized about doing something else when he was a fisherman. Well, as it turned out, Peter got not only a new job but a new name as well. He became “the Rock.” However, unlike Walter Mitty, Peter didn’t suddenly morph into someone else in an imaginary world. He grew into his new identity, making a lot of mistakes along the way. He even denied knowing Jesus at one point! But he kept at it, and eventually he became all that Jesus had envisioned.

This is how it works in our lives as well. When we are baptized, we take on a new identity. Then we commit ourselves to trying to grow in holiness, all the while learning how to yield to the Spirit’s work in our lives. It’s no fantasy. We know that we are weak, but we can take comfort in the fact that the Spirit is powerful and loves to give us his strength.

Today, as you celebrate Peter’s role as an early church leader, remember that this onetime fisherman didn’t start out as a saint. But God didn’t give up on him, and he didn’t give up on God! Today is a day to remember that God doesn’t give up on you—so don’t give up on him! He is always ready to give you more and more grace so that you can become the hero or heroine you want to be deep down inside. Try your best today to stay focused on “the prize of God’s upward calling, in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:14). And remember that your heavenly Father is right there beside you, cheering you on, every step of the way.

“Lord, I place my trust in you. Teach me, and remove all the stumbling blocks that keep me from becoming the disciple you have called me to be.”

1 Peter 5:1-4; Psalm 23:1-6

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