God referred to King David “as a man after His own heart” and yet David committed adultery, covered it up, and was guilty of murder.
God referred to the Apostle Paul as “His chosen instrument” and yet this chosen instrument spent many years of his life (before seeing the light) persecuting and murdering those who loved the Lord.
God referred to Peter as “the rock” and yet this rock, on three occasions, lacked courage and crumbled when his faith was put to the test.
The thoughts above are ones I originally shared in the short eBook I wrote a few years back. They came to mind again this morning after thinking about Peter and his journey of walking with Christ. He sure didn’t walk the walk perfectly, did he? Yes, he had incredible passion when it came for his love for the Lord. Yes, he had moments of insane “walk on water” courage. But, guess what? He was still human. He was still prone to looking at the rough seas all around him and then doubting who was in control. He still had a tendency to let fear speak louder than his faith. When the biggest test of his life came along, he hid behind a lie. “No, I do not know that man!”
One of the reasons I love scripture is because we can read the faith journeys of people like Peter, David and Paul and, as we do, we catch glimpses of ourselves in their humanness. In fact the entire Bible is filled with accounts of God using messed up people who are trying to learn how to love and trust and walk and do life with a Holy God. None of these folks were able to figure this out without times and seasons of failure and pain. None of them. I don’t know about you, but this is a huge relief to me! It’s comforting and it fills me with hope!
Read, again, how God referred to these men:
David: a man after His own heart
Paul: His chosen instrument
Peter: the rock
Wow. Wow. Wow.
You know what I love most about this? It reminds me that God’s power isn’t dependent at all on our skills and our ability. God’s power isn’t dependent at all on us having a squeaky clean resume. It isn’t dependent at all on us never falling down again. God desires to use us and work through us…yes. But God doesn’t need us. No, on the contrary, we need Him.
Here are some lies I used to believe:
“I’ve gone too far in the wrong direction.”
“It’s too late to start over.”
“It’s too late to make a different choice.”
“I made my bed now I have to lie in it.”
“I’ll ignore the pain and it will go away.”
“I’ll hide behind my mask because it’s safe there.”
This morning I thought about David, Paul and Peter and the lies they could have believed…
What if David had believed the lie he’d gone too far in the wrong direction when he slept with Bethsheba and then had her husband killed? (2 Samuel 11)
What if Paul had only said “What a wretched man I am?” and then had failed to look beyond what he had done to embrace the Truth of who he is in Christ? (Romans 7:24)
What if Peter, after denying Christ three times, had failed to recognize the Truth that God’s love and forgiveness was infinitely bigger than even his biggest failure. (John 21:15)
Here is the Truth I know today:
God is bigger.
It is never too late to begin again.
Nothing you have done or will do can ever make God love you any less.
God specializes in resurrecting dead and broken things.
Are there any lies holding you back today?
The cross is a great place to dump those lies. And the beauty is…you never have to pick them up again!