Monday Morning Cover to Cover......Do you love Me? Do you love Me? Do you love Me? John 21:15 and Peter answers: "What about John?" John 21:21
There is something that lingers with me from our chronological readings all week about what the people experienced. They were filled with awe. Do I have awe in my life over my God and the release of His Power? Acts 2:46, 47 means a lot to me today. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. I want to enjoy the favor of people not experience their silence or absence. This really meant something to me.
Jesus had just left them and one of his last words was that he left a "new" commandment. Not new in terms of time. But "new" in experience for them. It would be the Spirit of God pouring His love into them. We are totally dependent on His Spirit for life and love. Yet, why is our experience of love today so lackluster? Seems like there are so many programs to make Christianity work. So many principles to follow for blessings. But is it the love of my beautiful God that rules my heart? John 21:15 - "Simon, do you truly love Me"? Jesus asked three times, once for each of Peter's three denials. And our sweet LORD is asking each of us this very day. "Do you love Me?" I've thought so much about this verse over the past two years. What words come out of my mouth, out of my heart this day? Is it the love of my God that rules my heart? If not, celebrate. There is grace for our sin! The problem is our repentance is so shallow, so meager, so intermittent, so scattered, so distracted. Does love rule my heart more than the things of this world. Do we live for this world or another world?
In John 21:21, Peter says: "What about John"? This so happens to me. I look at my own spiritual growth and then look at others and say why can't I be validated like they are or successful like they are. And Jesus firmly said to Peter: "What's that to you? You follow Me."
The question for believers is no longer what will we do with this Jesus but the question becomes what will God do with us when we refuse to trust Him? Will I deal with my doubt and celebrate that there is grace for my sin? Again, some of his last words: "some still doubted but Jesus said: 'Go and make disciples...I am with you always.' " "Why are you troubled? Why do doubts arise in your mind? It is I myself! Touch me and see." Jesus is always inviting us to touch Him.
What is going on in me if my mind is not "open" to the Scriptures? Luke 24:45---Jesus opened their minds as they walked the Emmaus Road so that they could understand the Scriptures. Do I have not because I ask not, says James.
What I have loved about reading the Bible chronologically is such a picture of truth in the readings this week. Unlearned and untrained men walked with Jesus face-to-face. They doubted Him over and over, in their hearts and in the marketplace. Yet, when the Holy Spirit of God came on these same decrepit, doubtful, depressed, damaged disciples, they touched the Jesus that invited them to rely on His power. And He began working a work of faith with power. II Thes 1:11, 12---it's my prayer for you this day!