Time and Eternity
Just a few verses earlier in Matthew 16 Peter received divine insight that Jesus was not just a godly teacher or prophet, but in fact He was the Christ, God’s Messiah. How did he get it so wrong this time? The works Jesus did in front of Peter pointed to God as the healer, the restorer, the giver of life to the dead and this is all true! Today we who know God’s goodness and mercy may also go there first in our thoughts.
When a friend or loved one is in need, what is our first prayer? Lord, make it better. Jesus’ talk of suffering and death must have sounded to Peter’s ears, and perhaps to some of our ears as well, like wrong keys hit on the piano during a song. They just didn’t fit. Peter was likely thinking about the deliverance and well-being of the people and time immediately around him.
Jesus was thinking much bigger and much more long term than Peter. Jesus was thinking about all humanity and all of eternity. God is a truly the Father of mercies and God of all comfort (2 Cor. 1:3). When we pray for ourselves or one-another, we pray in hope. Not just hope for our desired outcome but hope for God to be glorified in all things.
Father in heaven, every good and perfect gift comes down from you. Be glorified in our lives, whether by healing and deliverance or by patience and faithful endurance. As we fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, we ask that all the experiences of our lives will point others to you. Amen.
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