Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Ok With Being An Exile

1 Peter 1:1-2 (MSG)Read it yourself

  • Exiles scattered to the four winds. 
  • Not one is missing, not one forgotten
  • God the Father has his eye on each of you.
  • [he] has determined by the work of the Spirit to keep you obedient through the sacrifice of Jesus.
  • May everything good from God be yours!

Peter is ‘ok’ with scattered. He was ‘ok’ with exiles. Earlier in his life, when Jesus said they would all be scattered, Peter said, “Not me!” At that time Peter was all about comparison. Readily pointing out to Jesus that “You can count on me!” Trying to prove his dedication and devotion. Peter lived in a delusion, I think he truly believed what he was saying. He didn’t know himself very well and because of that he didn’t know Jesus very well either. Jesus often called seeing people blind.

Peter once was blind but now he can see. He sees grace. He sees grace because Peter came to the place of despair. He sees grace because he heard the words of Jesus about his own denial and then saw them come to pass. He sees grace because in spite of his denial Jesus came and found him. He sees grace because he now knows that his life is in God’s hands and that God is faithful and true. He sees grace because he has experienced grace. It wasn’t until Peter experienced the despair of his own denial that his eyes become open to the truth and he could finally see the hand of God even in scattering and exile.

How do you know if you are blind? What do you see? Do you find yourself judging and comparing? Do you find the need to prove your devotion or goodness? Do you feel good when you see others fall, fail, and struggle because, “at least I’m not like them.” When you live in the darkness of your own pride and self-sufficiency you are blind. When your life is ‘All about me’, then you are blind. When you hang on to the comfortable and familiar thinking you are safer here than being an exile, then you are blind.

Jesus invites you into his life of adventure. you can take him at his word, you can trust him. God does not forget you no matter where you end up, no matter where life scatters you. God has his eye on you. It is his Spirit at work within you that is keeping you, changing your desires into his desires. Literally changing what you want. The big question is, Will you begin to move in the direction of your new found desires, or will you play it safe and stay with the familiar and comfortable?

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