Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life, and we have believed and have come to know, that You are the Holy One of God.”

John 6: 68, 69

 

Jesus had just asked Peter if he was with Him only for the show, for the fun of feeding crowds and hearing the praises of many, or was Peter going to stick with Jesus through the hard teaching on personal righteousness and when the crowds would first melt away and then turn hostile. Peter answers that he will stay with Jesus.

 

If we are honestly engaging Jesus in our own lives, we are going to encounter times when what He says and the things that He tells us to do will be challenging, convicting, disturbing, and conflict with what we have been doing and thinking. Jesus challenges the normative behaviors and attitudes of this world. He does this because this world has devolved into a place where God’s way and rule are at best ignored and often are ridiculed.

 

All of us have choices that are very much like Peter’s; we get to make these sorts of decisions every day, for there will be situations and relationships where God’s way of living will collide with our prior practice and with the way that others expect us to behave. Each time that we are faced with this sort of situation, we have an opportunity to make a choice regarding whose voice we listen to and which approach to life we adopt. When we do this we are also telling everyone around us something about ourselves, and we are telling them something about the way that we hold our relationship with God.

 

Thus, every time we choose to follow God’s way; when we choose to set aside our rights for the good of others, decide to forgive and to seek understanding, open our hearts to the unlovely, and surrender our wills to the calling of Christ, we claim a small part of this hostile world for God’s Kingdom, and we provide a tangible picture of Jesus’ love and grace to the people that we interact with.

 

Choosing Jesus and His ways is something that each of us gets to do over and over again throughout every day, and every time that we follow in His way regardless of how hard that may be, we grow closer to and more intimate with our Lord and Savior.