Restoration

When you mess up or fall down, He is there to help you back on course. Jesus is interested in restoration – bring us back into realtionship with Him.

After the resurrection, Peter went back to fishing. Some others said, “We’ll go too.” Be a good steward with your influences. Our actions have a powerful influence on others.

John 21:4-5 NLT

At dawn Jesus was standing on the beach, but the disciples couldn’t see who he was. He called out, “Fellows, have you caught any fish?” “No,” they replied.

“Fellows” actually meant “children” in Greek.

John 21:9 NLT

When they got there, they found breakfast waiting for them—fish cooking over a charcoal fire, and some bread.

Jesus had already prepared what they needed and didn’t have. His fish, not their fish. It’s not about what you bring to the table. You might have gifts and talents, but restoration is all about what Jesus brings, not you.

John 21:15-17 NLT

After breakfast Jesus asked Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you love me more than these? ” “Yes, Lord,” Peter replied, “you know I love you.” “Then feed my lambs,” Jesus told him. Jesus repeated the question: “Simon son of John, do you love me?” “Yes, Lord,” Peter said, “you know I love you.” “Then take care of my sheep,” Jesus said. A third time he asked him, “Simon son of John, do you love me?” Peter was hurt that Jesus asked the question a third time. He said, “Lord, you know everything. You know that I love you.” Jesus said, “Then feed my sheep.

Jesus’ questions are not based on Peter’s achievements. He knows Peter doesn’t feel qualified because he’d failed Him. He starts instead with the one thing that matters most.

Then He asks the extent of Peter’s love, whether or not he loved Jesus more than anyone or anything else, including his former way of life. He never compared Peter’s love to another person. Peter had gone back to his former way of living, and Jesus was calling him to something new.

Agape is the highest form of love – unconditional. Jesus uses it the first 2 times. In Peter’s first 2 responses, he responds with phileo, the friendship form of love. The 3rd time, Jesus uses phileo, and Peter uses agape. Jesus was meeting Peter where He was, and Peter was being influenced by Jesus.

Is Jesus your greatest love, and your greatest influence?

Worship

The enemy knows that God is at work in our lives. He wants to derail you, to get you off track.

Samson vs. Joseph

Samson was miraculously born. The only recorded prayer of Samson was at the end of his life, and it was for revenge. He married Delilah despite his parents’ advice simply because she pleased him.

Joseph, on the other hand, struggled constantly, from childhood. He was even thrown in prison for doing the right thing. But finally, he was placed in a high and honorable position.

David – “a man after God’s own heart” – but still he messed up, eventually. After he rose from grieving over his dying child, lost because of his own sin, he went and worshipped. (2 Samuel 2:12)

What have you been exposed to? What have you been put through? How many people have been hurt in a church and left and never come back? Whatever you have been through, whatever you have experienced, worship the Lord.

19 Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus, 20 by a new and living way which He consecrated for us, through the veil, that is, His flesh, 21 and having a High Priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. 23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, 25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.

26 For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, 27 but a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries. 28 Anyone who has rejected Moses’ law dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. 29 Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace? (Hebrews 10)