Peter Was Upset

Peter Was Upset

19 August 2010

Today’s Reading: Jeremiah 45-47; Psalm 105; John 21


Then he said it a third time: “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” Peter was upset that he asked for the third time, “Do you love me?” so he answered, “Master, you know everything there is to know. You’ve got to know that I love you.” Jesus said, “Feed my sheep. (John 21:17 MSG)

Peter was upset with Jesus! On the night and early morning of the illegal trial and the crucifixion, Peter had denied three times that he even knew Jesus. Now Jesus asked Peter three times, “Do you love me?” (Was it one affirmation of love for each denial?) And Peter got upset with Jesus! I don’t want to make too much of this, but Peter got mad at Jesus when Jesus was trying to work something out in Peter’s life. Jesus was probing Peter in order to clear up some past issues, and prepare him for the purpose God had for the rest of his life and for all of history!

Asking questions and pressing me to self-discovery seems like a big part of how God deals with my issues and attitudes and gets things across to me. I’m no better at handling God’s probing questions than Peter was! Sometimes I’m not too clear on what God is trying to do in my life and I really don’t appreciate his methods. I think, “Instead of asking all these questions and leading me through some complicated and obscure self-discovery process, just tell me what you want and let’s get it over with!”

I have to admit that, like Peter, I get upset sometimes. Pretty amazing to discover that you can get upset with God and he doesn’t even seem to notice – or change his approach. Also pretty amazing (and comforting) to see that he can handle my being upset with him without getting angry or just giving up on me!


Father, There are so many times when I just don’t get it. I don’t realize what’s going on and what you are trying to get at in me – what you are trying to help me learn about you and about myself. Thanks for being so patient with me and for not giving up on me when I get upset at your methods. Thanks for not getting upset with me when I get upset with you. You’re such a good Father. Amen.

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