Matthew 16:21-23 – From that time Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.  [22] And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him, saying, “Far be it from you, Lord! This shall never happen to you.”  [23] But he turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me. For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.” 
 
 Just look at that text of Scripture. One minute there’s Peter, a declarer of a truth which can only be known by revelation from God Himself; the next, a messenger of Satan trying to prevent the eternal plan of God from taking place. Peter, we are glad you were here. We are your children; like you we say glorious things given to us from God and follow them up with things that come from the pit. We are glad you are in heaven; a testimony of real, loving, powerful, saving grace – the same grace that we need every day, and which we will receive. We are glad that Jesus did not give up on you. It gives us hope that He will not give up on us. We are glad that you changed, a testimony that we do not have to stay the way we are any more than you did. We are glad that we have the same Holy Spirit that empowered you. We are glad that your story has been preserved for us. We are glad that God told us about how you kept falling back into old patterns such as forgetting the universality of the Gospel. The old patterns that we keep falling into are just as bad, or worse. We are sorry for the way we laugh at you for your bone headedness and rank stupidity at times while exhibiting the very same traits. We are glad that you would have done the same thing to us. We are glad that God chose you for you are no better or worse than the rest of us. We are glad for the reminder that if we were doing the choosing we would never have chosen you and thereby condemn ourselves as well. Oh Lord, thank you for choosing Peter. It reminds us that we are the chosen of God, not because of our value to you, but because of your undeserved love to us. Give us Peter’s heart even while honing us away from having his tongue and his innately bad attitude and culture bound understanding of things. We are Peter and we thank you that you still save, still love, still use, still forgive and still bring home in victory, the Peters of the world.

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