Monday, May 1, 2017

God's Extraordinary Love

John 21:15, 19b (NLT): God's Extraordinary Love
15 After breakfast Jesus asked Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you love me more than these [other disciples do]?”
“Yes, Lord,” Peter replied, “you know I love you.”
“Then feed my lambs,” Jesus told him.
19 . . . . Then Jesus told him, “Follow me.”
Throughout the gospels, Peter, leader among the disciples, makes repetitive mistakes. He even denies Jesus three times during the Passion. But God is all loving and forgiving. In the Scripture above, we notice how Jesus lives out this love by prompting Peter to reconcile -- not once, but three times: “Simon son of John, do you love me?”
Jesus knows our humanity. Not only did he create us, but he is one of us -- all God and all man. None of us is beyond forgiveness. Whenever I need a reminder of this, I recall Peter’s personality and actions. He was often confused, thick-headed, stubborn, and quick to judge -- everything I am (just ask Dana). But Jesus picked him to lead the early church. There is always hope, friends.
Through the discouraging haze of our mistakes, it is easy to lose focus and forget the extraordinary love of God in Jesus Christ. Jesus reminds us, however, as he does Peter, that we are to turn away from our mistaken path and turn toward him. And in our facing Jesus, we are met with love, forgiveness, and and a call to follow him.
I pray that each of us answer as Peter does -- “Yes, Lord, ...you know I love you” (21:15). May we answer the call to follow Christ in our daily mission to serve and give ourselves away to others. Amen.
Have a blessed week.
Stan