Commitment Built on Love
Daily Devotional for September 28th
So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yeah, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs. John 21:15
Peter, along with six other disciples, went back to fishing. (John 21:3) This was more than just a fishing trip with the boys; this was an attempt to go back to “life as it was before.” Peter and the sons of Zebedee were fishermen by trade. Fishing was their living! It was their life! Now, even though they had seen the Lord after the resurrection, there was still something driving them back into the world. Jesus doesn’t change your life just for you. There are others that must be reached. If you are born again, what Christ has accomplished in your life is enough to take to someone else to give them the hope that their life can also be changed.
Have you ever thought about the Saviour questioning your love for Him? This was exactly what happened to Peter. There was definitely a need for Peter and the Lord to have this conversation. It was a conversation of restoration. Peter had denied the Lord just a few days prior. His love for the lord was definitely in question. Jesus gave Peter the opportunity to restore that damaged relationship. This same question was asked three different times. By the third time of having your love for Christ questioned, how would you respond? The question was not for Jesus to be satisfied, but for Peter to confirm his love. You cannot deny Jesus, then go out and weep bitterly without loving him. Jesus knew this. There are times when we have all failed Christ, but our love for Christ causes us to look upon our failure with bitter tears and weeping with the determination to repent and have our relationship restored.
Your failure effects more than just you. There are people who watch your life and are encouraged by your walk with Christ whether you see it or not. In an age where the masses are living for self; for someone to walk in love and labor for the spiritual wealth of others is no less than extraordinary. Especially if you are in a calling of leadership, your commitment to God is constantly under surveillance. How do you react in times of trials, temptations and troubles? Is your work for the Lord contingent upon something other than your love for Him and His love for you? If that is the case, then it could only be a matter of time before you deny the Lord and return to the world. Your service to Christ cannot be built upon results. If the results are your focus, then you will stay on a spiritual rollercoaster and your labor for God will constantly fluctuate. If you love something else more than Jesus, then your service will be effected.
Your service must be built upon your love for Christ. Jesus said unto Peter, “Do you love me more than these?” Jesus, no doubt, turning to the fish that were just caught. Peter revealed the sincerity of his heart when he replied, “Yes, Lord, you know that I love you.” Jesus then commissioned him, “Feed my lambs/sheep.” Jesus knew that Peter loved Him, but did Peter love Him more than the fish? More than something else? You may love the Lord. Jesus may have saved you already, but do you love something else more than Him? Is your affection set upon something other than the one who loved you enough to bleed and die upon an old rugged cross just for you? Maybe you’ve been born again but have failed the Lord in some way. Maybe you’ve once labored for Christ but are ready to give up because the results are less than you expected. Do you love Him more than anything else? Is your love for Him your driving force?