Sunday, February 01, 2009

Stay Focused


Matthew 16:21 From that time on Jesus began to explain to his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the elders, chief priests and teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and on the third day be raised to life.

22 Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. “Never, Lord!” he said. “This shall never happen to you!” 23 Jesus turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the things of God, but the things of men.”

24 Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. 25 For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it.

26 What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul? 27 For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father's glory with his angels, and then he will reward each person according to what he has done. 28 I tell you the truth, some who are standing here will not taste death before they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.”


Imagine Peter having just said these words to Jesus: “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” (Matthew 16:16)

And now he is rebuking Jesus, this man that he just said is the “Son of the Living God.” You may say “what nerve” but we all want to tell God how it should be done and what should come to pass.

James 4:15 Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord's will, we will live and do this or that.”

Jesus says that if we are on board with God’s plan then we have to lay down our own desires and pick up our cross and follow him. We cannot run our own life and be a follower at the same time, somebody is in control we just have to decide who it‘s going to be.

Rick Warren says that this life is a “temporary assignment”, how tragic it would be to have it all for this temporary assignment and then have nothing for eternity. So much of what we worry about is just a vapor that dries up and doesn’t really matter.

The ultimate reward goes to the man who gave up running his own life and chased after God’s desires for his life.


I must stay focused on the eternal assignment and work for my Savior. Any temporary worldly gain is a blessing from the Lord that I need to manage wisely and use for his purposes.


Thank you for being a God of second chances, for allowing us to grow instead of forcing us to instantly change into what you want us to be. Peter finally gets it right in a lot of ways but he is never perfect while he is on this temporary assignment. Help me to always to be concerned with the eternal instead of the temporary.