Friday, July 18, 2008

Leap into the deep

Today’s Reading: John 13:37-38(NIV)
37 Peter asked, “Lord, why can’t I follow you now? I will lay down my life for you.” 38 Then Jesus answered, “Will you really lay down your life for me? I tell you the truth, before the rooster crows, you will disown me three times!”

Good morning!

Have you ever felt led to take a leap of faith to accomplish something vitally important, only to have it come back and bite you in the caboose? Some call this exercise trial and error. Retrospect can be revealing, even alarming as we try to sort out the things we say and do.

I don’t know about all of you, but this is certainly the story of my life. At some point, one has to leap into the deep if they intend to test their survival skills. We won’t know our true potential unless we are willing to risk the possibility that we may very well fail. It is far easier to not try at all than to take a flying leap. I don’t always see that brick wall coming, even when it is only inches from my face. Do you run into brick walls, like I do? Choices have consequences. Can you see how the choices you make today will affect the lives of those around you in the years to come?

Peter was alarmed at Jesus’ words. He couldn’t possibly understand why the disciples couldn’t follow Him right then and there. Impulsively and without hesitation, Peter exclaimed that he would lay his life down for the Lord he loves. Jesus knew Peter so much better than Peter knew himself. Jesus knew that even with the best of intentions, Peter would fail to keep his word. He wasn’t yet ready or equipped to leap into the deep. Jesus knew that in Peter’s impulsiveness, he would become discouraged, disgusted, and yes, even devastated by his rash decision. Christ encouraged Peter to look beyond his own human weakness, and learn to rely more fully upon Christ’s presence and power. If Peter could simply let go and step out of His way, Jesus could work great things in and through him. How do you think Peter learned to let go and let God?

A leap of faith is never easy. We can be our own worst enemies, getting in the way of the Holy Spirit; trying to make things happen the way we want it to, rather than how God wills it into being. If we can simply learn to let go of our own desires and let God move in and through us, taking a leap into the deep might not be quite so scary. We will find that in Christ, through Christ, and by Christ, we will live, and move and have our being. Isn’t this awesome news on a day just like today?
Who’s in control of your life? Are you willing to leap into the deep for Jesus?

Grace and peace,

Deb Spaulding
Faith UMC - St. Charles, MO

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