March 21, 2023
Do You Recognize Me?
Recently I was asked to bring the weekly devotional at the Middle School Fellowship Of Christian Athletes (FCA) here in our county. I showed up early and awaited the students to enter the gym. As the students started arriving, I saw 3 or 4 who attend our church and are a part of our youth group. I waved to them and they kind of looked in horror that I would acknowledge them in public.
Every time that I looked their way, they tried their best to avoid eye contact with me. I think that they feared that I might call them out or acknowledge that I knew them while I was speaking. Even though I love my teen group and they know that I am proud of them, at school it wasn’t “cool” for me to even hint that I knew them. I get it. I was a teen once many, many moons ago.
I thought about when Peter was in the courtyard outside of the building where Jesus was on trial. Peter had told Jesus that he was so loyal and faithful to Jesus that he would go to the death with Him. Jesus told Peter that before the rooster crowed, he would deny three times that He knew Jesus
In the courtyard a young girl came up to Peter and accused him of knowing Jesus. Peter denied it. Then someone else accused Peter of being one of Jesus’ disciples because of the way that he talked. This time Peter strongly denied that he knew Jesus. In the third and final accusation that Peter faced of being a follower of Jesus Peter denied it strongly with a curse.
The Bible tells us that when Peter denied Jesus for the third time a rooster crowed and Jesus looked at Peter as if to say, “Do you know me now Peter? This broke Peter’s heart and he went out and wept bitterly. To think that He had denied even knowing the one who had given him a new lease on life through saving his soul.
We haven’t changed very much. No I am certainly not Jesus but the fact that the students from our church didn’t really want anyone to know that they knew the Preacher speaks volumes of the mindset of society today. We want to be saved and go to Heaven but we don’t want anyone to really know that we have a relationship with Jesus. We don’t tell others about Him and how good that He has been to us. We don’t pray in public because it isn’t cool and our friends might laugh at us or make fun of us.
Jesus said in Luke 9:26, “If anyone is ashamed of Me and My words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when He comes in His glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels.” So it may not be cool to acknowledge Jesus before your coworkers, friends, other students, or even your family. But Jesus isn’t ashamed of you no matter how sinful you have been. He died to wash away your sins and give you new life here and a home in Heaven one day. So love Him enough to act like you know Him and tell others how awesome He is.
In love with Jesus – Gary Mimbs