One of my favorite people to study in the Bible is Peter. I find his walk with Jesus so interesting and relatable.
That said, the two words I would use to describe Peter are: unstable and insecure.
This is the man that left everything he ever knew to follow Jesus on a moment’s notice and at his brother’s suggestion (Luke 5). He’s the guy that fanatically tried to walk on water just to nearly drown because he lacked faith (Matthew 14). He’s the guy that fell asleep after Jesus told him to sit and pray just to wake up and cut off a soldier’s ear. Peter is the guy that denied being associated with Jesus three times the day of the crucifixion after assuring Him he would never (Luke 22). To me, these actions are evidence of great internal instability and insecurity. Peter had a rocky walk with Jesus.
But Peter is also the man that preached a sermon that brought thousands of lives to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ (Acts 2).
And you know who knew he would be THAT man from the beginning? Jesus.
In John 1, we see Jesus call the first disciples to follow Him. Peter was among them. In verse 42 it says that when Jesus looked at Peter, he said “You are Simon the son of Jonah. You shall be called Cephas” (which is translated, A Stone).
Wait, what? Why would Jesus, being all-knowing, decide to call Peter by a name that means “stone” or “rock”? A rock/stone is something stable and secure; something that could be used as a strong foundation. That doesn’t sound like Peter to me.
But see, when Jesus first speaks to Peter in John 1, He calls him by what he would later become in Him. He didn’t call him by what he was. He didn’t look at Peter and see the instability I do. Jesus looked at him and saw the rock He would become for the kingdom.
And here’s the thing – Jesus looks at you the same way.
I know how tough it is to wrap our heads around that. I mean, my goodness, it makes no logical sense at all. But I find the Sciptures to be very clear in showing us that when Jesus calls us to follow Him, he doesn’t look at us and see our imperfections or the mistakes we’ve made/will make. He looks at us and sees what we will become in Him – just like He did with Peter.
I’m not sure where life has you today. I’m not sure if you’re struggling to see beyond who you are in this moment. I just know that Jesus never calls you by what you used to be. He doesn’t even call by what you are, as lovely or unlovely as that may be. He calls you by what you’ll become in Him.
And I hope you let the Lord show you how live in that truth.
For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus. (Philippians 1:6)