This past weekend, we listened to Lead Pastor Ben Snyder talk about stepping out of the shadows and into the light. This is not something we do on our own or from our own power. It is only possible because of Jesus’ resurrection. Ben shared that Jesus is the light (John 8:12): “He wants to bring you out of the darkness. He wants to change the way you see your life and the world around you.”
One of the ways that God leads us out of the darkness and into the light is by revealing purpose in our lives. Often our mundane lives echo with the sounds of, “We’re not enough.” We’re not successful enough, not fast enough, or not rich enough. All of this background noise prevents us from finding peace in our lives. Peace you can find only by following Jesus as your true savior. When we step out of the shadows and into the light, Jesus gives us purpose in the mundane. He relates to our ordinary lives on Earth.
I think the story of Peter’s denial of knowing Jesus is a good example of living life from a place of “I am not enough.” While Jesus was being questioned, Peter was not far away. He stood taking in the warmth of a small fire in the courtyard when someone saw him and pointed out that he was one of Jesus’ followers. Peter denied it, and within a few hours, denied Jesus twice more. After realizing his failure, Peter slipped into the shadows of discouragement.
During our own walks in life, very often a major disappointment or setback blocks us from truly stepping out of the shadows and into the Resurrected Life that God intends for us. Jesus wants to lead us back into the light, though.
In Peter’s case, Jesus restored him by asking three times, “Do you love me?” (John 21:15-17). Peter, who previously denied Jesus three times, now answers him each time: “Yes, Lord … you know I love you.” By asking these questions, Jesus was reminding Peter what was true. He wanted to change the way Peter thought about himself and his place in the world. Ultimately, Jesus reminded Peter of his purpose.
Despite his denials, Jesus gave Peter a new start. The Lord will do the same for you. No matter what failures are in your past, Jesus can redeem them and give them purpose. No matter what you think of yourself, God wants you to know that you are special. And no matter where you are, you have an opportunity to live out God’s plan for your life.
For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.
2 Corinthians 5:17
This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!
What is God asking you to do in your life? What’s holding you back?
Is there anything (or anyone) in your life that has stopped you from living the Resurrected Life?
What’s stopping you from doing the good things he planned for us long ago?
Jesus calls us to new life in him, but we don’t have to wait until our resurrection day to begin a new life. He is faithful. Just as Jesus restored Peter, he will restore you too. Step into the light, forgo the shadow of doubt, and spread the news: Jesus is LOVE.
Abba Father, I pray that you keep me from returning to my old life and guide me to a new life in you. Keep me free from the shadows to live in the light, bringing your love and salvation to others around me. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.
This post was written by the LivingItOut Team.
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