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Ordering one's personal life by making amends
by beatrice ofwona
5/10/2010 / Christian Living
You have been through so much turmoil, you may even have been disciplined through the months, nothing seems to have gone the way you would have wanted to; it is time to make amends.
Simon Peter was an outgoing, likable fellow, a leader and spokesman for the rest of the disciples. He was confident and had what it takes to do what he said he wanted to do. Christ had predicted that Peter would deny him, this the latter quickly denied as a possibility. Later on he did just that; denied his friend and Lord three times. Many of us love the Lord just like Peter did but in the recent past, we might have failed him. Peter failed the Lord on several occasions, failing to stay up with him as the master sweated blood in prayer then later denying him three times. Peter was as human as the rest of us, with limitations and fears.
In John 21:1-15 we see the Lord meeting with Peter after resurrection but he does not refer to these betrayals. It can be assumed that after Christ's death, Peter must have been weighed down by the guilt of having denied the master to the extent that he now sought to go fishing, his old trade, to deal with these feelings. God has a way of dealing with us because they caught no fish but the master appeared himself to set matters straight, he welcomed him and six others disciples for breakfast. In what followed, we see Peter making amends for what he had earlier done wrong.
You might want to pursue a career or an opportunity that has presented itself but every time you try, nothing comes out of your efforts. This means that some amending needs to be done before a semblance of potential can be seen from you. The Lord needed to appear to Peter before his potential could be seen. That same Jesus we are told in Hebrews 13:8 is the same yesterday, today and forever; what he could do then for Peter, he can do for you. He is willing and able to make amends for you. He wants to heal you of all the things that ail or discourage you; all those issues that you are handling, be it the divorce that you are trying so hard to justify or that sickness that has been hanging onto you for as long as you can remember. In John 16:33 Christ tells us to be of good cheer whatever it is that we are going through because he too overcame tribulations. The master is out of the tomb and he wants to take care of you.
To reinstate Peter therefore, the Lord asked him "Do you love me?" (John 21:15). This he did three times to dispel the three times Peter had denied him. If you too love Jesus Christ, you will persevere and await his word living in the way that is described in Hebrews 12:1-3 because victory shall eventually be yours. Christ took the initiative to restore Peter. Like Peter, Christ has business with your life; he needs to restore you and therefore needs you to make penitence. In the book of Acts chapters 2, 3, 4 and 5 we meet a multiplied and certainly different Peter, fully restored and who has long made amends with the Lord.
You too can be restored because God has a special job waiting just for you. Christ cannot let you go to waste; he has invested too much in you already and would like to see you come to fruition. The enemy might be keeping you down, telling you to be casual or to keep a distance in your worship but Christ is offering you breakfast; he would like to fellowship with you and align you with his purpose for your life. Christ reached out to Peter and forgave him.
You may even have prayed and fasted but inside of you lies the root of all your bitterness; you have refused to forgive someone who wronged you years ago. It could be a church member, a pastor, a spouse, a friend or a relative; it does not matter. John 6:14-15 asks you to forgive regardless of what was done to you if you expect your Father in heaven to forgive you. Make amends because your personal love can be hampered or stagnated by your lack of forgiveness. As soon as Peter confessed three times that he loved Christ, the latter commissioned him. In Acts we meet Peter healing and witnessing to the very Sanhedrin he had denied Christ, he is bold and indomitable. Now even his shadow could be used of God to heal the sick.
What you should learn herein is that firstly, you must be consistent both in church and in the market place. Be a dependable person who is open about his shortcomings, one who walks the talk and keeps his promises. Although Peter was inconsistent in his worship, sometimes chopping off ears, other times denying Jesus he later became a rock on which Christ built his church; this was only possible after he had made amends with the master.
Secondly, be transparent and open, cutting through ambiguity and using plain language to demystify jargon that hides the truth. Mathew 5:37 says, let your 'Yes' be 'Yes' and 'No', 'No 'anything else is from the enemy.
Thirdly, have a personal courage and stand; do not do things because your pastor does them. Stand up for difficult things even when it is lonely to do so. If you are guided by the doctrines of the bible, then you do not need company to stand with you, you know where your source is. Jehovah is looking for people who are for Him and not those who are wishy washy.
Fourthly, be willing to pay personal cost. There will betimes of ridicule and jeering but remember that Christ triumphed over it all and so you too must be steadfast.
Lastly, be willing to act as a role model for peers, workmates, colleagues and the world at large. Be the light that shines so that others may want to be like you.
When you make amends all these good things come your way. There is something called timing and if you do not take advantage of it, you may never get another chance to try. The time to make amends is now because the Lord is risen for that.
May these words (sermons), from various men and women of God be a blessing to all.
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