Lessons from Peter: Show some initiative

After six days Jesus took Peter, James, and his brother John and led them up on a high mountain by themselves. He was transformed in front of them, and His face shone like the sun. Even His clothes became as white as the light. Suddenly, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, talking with Him. Then Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, it’s good for us to be here! If You want, I will make three tabernacles here: one for You, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” While he was still speaking, suddenly a bright cloud covered them, and a voice from the cloud said:

This is My beloved Son.
I take delight in Him.
Listen to Him!                              MATTHEW 17:1-5

Maybe it’s because they were both Apostles, maybe he was just trying to be nice, but when Matthew records this scene in the life of Peter, he kind of sugar coats it a little bit.  In Luke (who was not an Apostle), it says that Peter didn’t know what he was saying.  In Mark (also not an Apostle) it says that Peter was terrified and didn’t know what to say.  In any case, you know its time to shut up when God speaks in an audible voice and tells you to listen.

One of the first lessons from Peter that people usually learn is to be quiet.  Peter is always talking.  He’s usually the first one to answer any question, and the first one to ask.  And as often as not it got him in trouble.  But before writing him off as a cautionary tale, a guy with his foot in his mouth so much he probably has athlete’s tongue, consider this: Peter was in the game.  He showed initiative.  When everyone else was either too scared or too amazed to say anything, Peter spoke up.  He was willing to fill the gap between fear and action, always, and although he made mistakes, he also became the Rock on which Christ said He would build His church (Matthew 16:18).  It’s easy to criticize him from the cheap seats, but at least he was on the field.  Where are you?

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