Good morning Friends! I have been busy at work so I have not had the time to add any additional comments on this blog other than the Daily Devotional. I hope you are all healthy and your loved ones are staying well also. We continue to pray for everyone during this crisis, but we specifically lift you all up and ask for God’s supernatural protection to continue to bless you. Below is another track off Micah Tyler‘s new album that will help lift your spirits. Never forget you’re part of the biggest and greatest family ever.
15When they had finished eating, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?”
“Yes, Lord,” he said, “you know that I love you.”
Jesus said, “Feed my lambs.”…
Jesus said, “Feed my sheep. 18Very truly I tell you, when you were younger you dressed yourself and went where you wanted; but when you are old you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go.” 19Jesus said this to indicate the kind of death by which Peter would glorify God. Then he said to him, “Follow me!” (John 21:15-19)
The verses above come from today’s reading plan. It’s an important closing in the Gospel of John for Peter, and for all of humanity. Jesus asks Peter three times if Peter loves Him. Peter does not see the significance of this as we do thousands of years later. Jesus asks Peter the same question three times to redeem Peter for the three times he denied Jesus the night he was arrested. As Peter was approached by three different strangers, asking Peter if he was associated with Jesus, Peter denied knowing the Son of God. So, essentially, back before the resurrection, when put on the spot, Peter had said he did not love Jesus. If he would not even admit to knowing Jesus, how was he able to admit he loved the Messiah. So Jesus gives Peter a shot at redemption, by asking him three times if he loved Jesus. And as Peter answers Jesus, he is given three sets of instructions: feed my lambs, take care of my sheep, and feed my sheep. So you may wonder why Jesus tells Peter to feed both His “lambs” and His “sheep.” Simply, I understand this to mean the literal, that a lamb is a baby sheep, so Jesus must be referring to those that will be new to following Christianity and the sheep are the older, current believers. For Peter to feed them and tend to them means he will have to give them the word of God from Jesus’ teaching. There is no greater sustenance to feed your soul then the truth of Jesus. It is the way and the life.
Jesus knew Peter had the potential and the promise to build His church long before Peter ever realized it. In fact, we still have not seen Peter demonstrate the leadership characteristics he will display as the leader of a church that will change the world. But today, we see, once again, the unending love and grace of Jesus as He restores Peter’s confidence in himself. The three denials are replaced with three confessions of love.
No matter how great your sin has been. No matter how bad of a life you have lived. No matter how much you might beat yourself up for mistakes of your past. No matter how much you do not believe in yourself, Jesus loves you. Jesus forgives you. And Jesus will restore you. Every. Single. Time. Confess your love for Him and find grace that never ends. Love God. Love Jesus. Love people. Find grace and purpose in His plan. Follow Jesus. Let’s feed the lambs, tend to the sheep. The world needs us now more than ever.
Reading plan: John 21:15-25
Deeper reading plan: 2 Chronicles 25-31
Prayer and meditation: Pray for the sick, pray for the lost and their loved ones. Pray for redemption for this lost world. Pray for a reviving rattle to shake COVID off this planet. And continue to pray for all those in medical professions, grocery stores, supply chain operators, first responders, and the amazing teachers still doing all they can to teach the students they love so much.
Fitness challenge: This week we will stick to 3 sets of these calisthenics but bump up the reps only slightly. 25 reps of each exercise 1-7, then repeat for a total of 3 sets. After this week we are going to mix it up during May, break this monotonous routine. Just a reminder, the fitness challenge has been building since January 1, so if you are just joining us recently, do as many reps as you can for each exercise, and do three complete sets.
1. Standard push-up
2. Sit-up or crunches
3. Air squats
4. Hand-release push-up
5. Leg lifts
6. Lunges (7-each leg)
7. 4-count flutter kicks