REFLECT: Now Peter sat outside in the courtyard. And a servant girl came to him, saying, “You also were with Jesus of Galilee.” But he denied it before them all, saying, “I do not know what you are saying.”…..But again he denied with an oath, “I do not know the Man!”….Then he began to curse and swear, saying, “I do not know the Man!” Matthew 26: 69-70, 72, 74
APPLY: Photographic media is treated with a chemical to produce a negative or positive image after exposure. The process transforms latent images into detailed images – that can be clearly seen. Fear is the caustic agent that reveals – in the darkroom of our anxiety – what we value most, and how little we trust God.
When you are afraid, ask yourself: What am I worried about? Why am I worried about this? What will happen if this fear is realized? What does God say – in the Bible – about this risk to me? Do I really believe God’s Word to me about this situation? The answers will be fertile ground for prayer.
Impetuous Peter was sadly indignant to hear that one of their number would betray the Lord (Matthew 26: 20-22). He was so sure that it was not he, loving the Lord as he did, that he declared confidently “Even if all are made to stumble because of You, I will never be made to stumble.” (Matthew 26:33).
It was Peter alone who had mustered up the courage to follow the now arrested Jesus to the High Priest’s home. He was the only one who was seated, quaking, cloaked, by the courtyard fire. He was fully aware of the awful possibilities of the situation, not only for Jesus but for himself, if he was identified as a disciple of Jesus.
It was this same Peter who denied with an oath, cursing and swearing, that he “did not know the Man” (Matthew 26: 72, 74). In the grip of terror, the desire to live and escape prosecution overcame his love and loyalty to his Lord. All it took was the inquisitive queries of a bystander and a couple of servant girls. (Matthew 26: 69, 71, 73.)
By examining what you fear, you will incidentally uncover what your true priorities are. Rather than be cause for reproach, this can be utilized as an opportunity to take stock, to reprioritize and to deliberately make changes.
PRAY: Lord help me overcome fear, while using its intrusion as a means to discern what I value more than I ought, and how I trust you less than I should. Help me face the truth of what’s in my heart, that I may address the inbalances exposed. I don’t want to value anything more than you. I want to put my whole trust in you. Help me Father, for Christ’s sake, Amen.