Wednesday, May 15, 2002

Matthew 16:22-23

"Then Peter took him, and began to rebuke him, saying, Be it far from thee, Lord: this shall not be unto thee.
But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men."
Matthew 16:22-23

Peter listened to Christ talking about some of the bad things that were going to happen to him, and he didn't want to believe it... he didn't want it to happen, and so he tried to brush it aside.  But Christ knew that it was his Father's will that all of these things happen, and wishing it were otherwise was a tool of Satan.  I think I do that in my own life a lot.  There are difficult decisions to make, and hard things to face, and instead of walking forward, I wait around complaining that it is too hard, or that I shouldn't have to go through that. :)  But the things of God are straight ahead of me, and trying to avoid them is taking me nowhere except closer to Satan's grasp.  The verse after this is one of many that talks about denying yourself and taking up your cross to follow Christ... and I think that these verses help to explain that idea.  Going wherever God's path takes you is a difficult thing at times... you have to deny yourself a more pleasant road, or a side trip that you've always wanted to take.  You have to give up what you want for what God wants sometimes, not because someone is forcing you, but because that is what the destination requires.  You can't get to God's house by going somewhere else.  Christ went where he was headed, despite the hardships of the journey, and refused to turn off on a side road because the road was too hard.  We need to do the same as we follow him.  Not that the road is always horrible, but we have to take the hardships along with the blessings as we travel.

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