Matthew 16:23 “But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.”
Why do we do what we do?
Much of what we do in this life is self-serving. Work, love, and living seem to focus on our wants and desires. The gospel was presented to us amidst all that we had planned.
Yet, when it came, and we trusted Christ as Savior, everything changed. We were transformed as our spirit came alive for the first time. We now are directly connected to the Father through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. We were adopted.
We all have a vision of how we think things should go for us. Marriage, children, work, careers, possessions, and what our lives will look like at the end all have come across our minds.
Many have clear, definitive lines to achieve those goals and visions and can be seen clearly in their choices. It is what we feel defines who we are and what we are in this life.
Salvation changes all that.
God has a plan that existed far before we ever came into existence.
Ephesians 2:10 “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.“
He gave us gifts and talents that are to be used for His glory, not ours. I often wonder what some people may have done had they yielded their gifts and talents to God instead of seeking the world’s fame and fortune.
We often covet the position of those who have been able to rise above and be recognized as successful… but are they?
In our passage, Peter thought he had a fix on who Jesus should be – to him.
Matthew 16:22 “Then Peter took him, and began to rebuke him, saying, Be it far from thee, Lord: this shall not be unto thee.”
Peter saw his world in need of a king, not a suffering Savior.
What of us?
Do we see our need to be delivered from our trials and tribulations? Or do we accept what comes from God as His gift to us to make us what we need to be more like His Son, Jesus?
Are we discouraged when our expectations don’t line up with reality?
Are we first grumpy and complain, or do we seek God to aid us through the valley we face?
Are we easily discouraged or give up because there are difficulties we cannot see our way around? Do we stand our ground in the belief that we are led by God? Or is there fear because we do not know what God is doing or why?
If there are daily works for us to perform, commands to hedge our way and guide our path, and promises of power, provision, and protection, why is it so hard to rest in the things that God has for us?
Is it because we must do it God’s way and not ours? That is precisely where Peter found himself when he rebuked the Lord for declaring His death, burial, and resurrection.
He had just declared Jesus the Son of God, the promised and long-awaited Messiah. His vision of how things should unfold got in the way of what God had planned long before there was ever a Peter.
If we are to savor the things of God as our passage tells us, our view and perspective on this life must be in line with the One who not only created us but owns us as well.
We know we have an enemy who will try to distract, deceive, divide, and destroy all that God seeks to do in our lives; God has provided for that as well.
He has given us armor to protect and defend.
Ephesians 6:13-17 “Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:”
We have a path to allow God to fight for us.
James 4:7-8 “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.”
We must first submit and resist before Ol’ Smutty face will leave. If we do not do our part, why should the devil be required to do his?
To savor what God has for us is to submit to what is His plan, not ours.
We want shortcuts, an easier path, no pain, sacrifice, or suffering. But looking at our Savior’s way to redeem our souls, how could we not accept whatever comes with joy that it is to become more like our Savior?
We say we savor the things of God. But can we accept the path to get that place?