God is the only One who can see the full story. And, our job is to trust Him enough to surrender. ~ Laura
Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of John, do you love Me more than these?” He said to Him, “Yes, Lord, You know that I love You.” He said to Him, “Feed My lambs.” — John 21:15
Hi there, friends! This is week five of the I Give Up Online Bible Study. Our final lesson. This week is the exclamation point on an amazing study of surrender.
Peter is one of my favorites in the Bible. Is he your favorite disciple too? He’s beloved by many for all these centuries because he was so openly messy and wild, passionate and blundering. Just like us. He followed Jesus. He was the only disciple to follow Him even out onto the stormy sea (Matthew 14:22-33), where he sank in fear. But, he did it! You’ve got to give him points for that! Peter was intense. He was zealous. He fiercely loved Jesus. He promised Him he’d die before betraying Him (Matthew 26:35).
And, he blew it. Peter failed and he wept bitterly for it (Matthew 26:75).
Imagine that distress.
I love what Jesus did with Peter’s failure… He made Him breakfast tacos.
Jesus made a meal for His disciples. Breakfast on the beach. I wouldn’t want fish for breakfast (or any time for that matter), but there isn’t a better location for pancakes, or chilaquiles, or a fruit smoothie with Jesus than at the beach. I wish we could have overheard the entirety of Jesus’ private conversation with Peter because I bet there were tears and embraces of reconciliation. Jesus forgave Peter and built him back up. He prepared him spiritually and emotionally for Acts and for Pentecost and for his upcoming ministry that would set the world on fire. He had called Peter “the rock” in Matthew 16:18, but this meal by the seaside is where he was quarried.
Fellowship can be restored even after the worst of transgressions.
What incredible beauty and restoration God can bring out of a disastrous failure that is surrendered to Him! It was true for Peter and it’s true for you and me. All Jesus says to us is
“Follow Me.” — John 21:19[God] is looking for dependence. He’s looking for willingness. ~ Laura
You don’t have to get it right all the time. I don’t have to get it right all the time. All that Jesus asks of us is the willingness to follow and the bravery to surrender our lives and our story to Him and let Him do the rest. He’s the master craftsman who will make our stories, though so very different from one another’s, ones that are distinguished from the world in that they glorify Him.
We believe that surrendering our lives to the Lord has a ripple effect in every aspect of our lives. ~ Laura
It’s life-changing. Sometimes life-upending. Definitely life-surrendering. But we are promised that our stories will be made beautiful in His time and in His hands. And to His glory!
God chose to use messy and wild, passionate and blundering Peter to change the world, to launch the Church! Little did he know the ripple effects of giving up!
We can’t begin to imagine what He will do with our surrendered lives, too.
May we surrender. May we surrender. God we give up. ~ Laura
This week in your study:
- Watch the video for session five on our study home page or live with other participants… Take notes in your study guide on pages 79-83.
- Go through the study questions with your group or on your own on pages 84-90.
- Review I Give Up, Chapters 11-14.
- Join the conversations with fellow participants in the private Facebook group!
Scriptures this Week
Prayer for the Week
Jesus, we love You. We surrender to You. We give up. Thank You for the beautiful things you are doing in our lives even when we can’t see it. Thank You that our failures aren’t permanent when they are surrendered to You. Thank You that You truly love the openly messy and wild, passionate and blundering. Thank You that You passionately love us and forgive us and restore us for Your glory. Amen.