Submitting to God
Today’s Reading: Ezekiel 22-23; 1 Peter 1
"Surely not, Lord!" Peter replied. "I have never eaten anything impure or unclean." The voice spoke to him a second time, "Do not call anything impure that God has made clean." Acts 10:14-15
Do you feel comfortable saying "no" to God? We might not have the ability to admit it but we each say "no" to God in some way. Sometimes we say "no" by choosing to not witness. Sometimes we say "no" by refusing to volunteer. Sometimes we say "no" by ignoring the prompting of our heart. But most of the time we say "no" because we refuse to accept His will for our lives.
In Matthew 16:13, Jesus asked His disciples, "Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?" The disciples answered His question by stating what others think about Him. "But who do you say that I am?" Simon Peter is the only one who answered and said, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God." Jesus acknowledges to Peter that God, Himself, has revealed this to him.
A few passages later, Jesus begins explaining that He will have to suffer. Peter again is the only one who speaks up as he disagrees with God's plan, taking the liberty to rebuke the Lord. Matthew 16:22-23 says, “Then Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, ‘Far be it from You, Lord; this shall not happen to You!’ Jesus turned and said to Peter, ‘Get behind Me, Satan! You are an offense to Me, for you are not mindful of the things of God, but the things of men.’” Peter has gone from a place of esteem to a place of rebuke. In Acts 10, we find Peter disagreeing with God again as he says, "Surely not, Lord."
We are flesh and our natural born nature rebels against the Lord at times. God can handle whatever position we take and He wants to reason with us on our position. Talk to Him and be honest. The problem comes when we place our thoughts and desires over God's, to a point of rebuking the Lord. We may not have the boldness to tell Him we think He is wrong, but our actions show the thoughts and intents of our hearts as we choose not to submit or yield or even listen to what He is trying to say. God's ways do not make sense to us and His thoughts are not our thoughts.. Peter was a man who had an honest relationship with God. His rebukes may not seem respectful but he kept himself in a position to keep listening until his will lined up with God's will.
What is the Lord trying to tell you today? Are you going through a set of circumstances that you refuse to acknowledge is God's will for your life? Are you fighting or submitting? Are you willing to listen or are you running? Let us all pray that we are on God's side. When it comes down to it, He is going to win. Don't you want to be on His team?