Impulsive teens jumping off wall into water

What Can We Learn From Peter?

By guest author
KAYLA WRIGHT
Licensed Christian Counselor
Specialist in Child & Adolescent Therapy
Life Training Christian Counseling

There are many characters in the Bible I relate to. I see myself in the Israelites. Their wandering in the desert for 40 years looks a lot like how I feel when my circumstances feel stagnant in my season of waiting. I see myself in Jonah, as he allows his fear to overwhelm his faith and hides from the Lord’s calling on his life. I, too, have wrestled with stepping into God’s will for my life. Though, of all of the individuals I find myself in, I mostly feel drawn to Peter.

Peter Was Impulsive

We see his impulsivity come out many times throughout the Gospels, both in a positive and negative light. He jumps out of the boat to walk on water towards Jesus (Matthew 15). He rebukes Jesus when He first predicts His own death in Matthew 16, leading Jesus to rebuke him. He cuts a man’s ear off when Jesus is being arrested (John 18). He denies Jesus three times after being warned he would (Matthew 26). He gets out of the boat and swims to Jesus when he recognizes him on shore after his resurrection (John 21). Like Peter, I find myself incredibly impulsive, leading me to speak before listening and act before thinking. My impulsiveness has brought me into some trouble, but it has also, at times, allowed me to immediately follow Jesus when I feel the calling to go.

Peter Strived For Jesus’ Acceptance

If we’re being honest, most of the disciples wanted Jesus’ approval. In the Gospel he wrote, John calls himself “the one whom Jesus loves.” However, Peter often says things to Jesus in an attempt to gain His approval. In Matthew 17:1-4, Peter doesn’t know what to do as he witnesses Jesus’ transfiguration. In an effort to do the right thing, he offers to “put up three shelters” for Jesus, Moses, and Elijah. Jesus does not acknowledge his suggestion. We also see Peter offering to forgive someone up to seven times in an effort to impress Jesus, but Jesus puts him in his place by saying, “not seven times, but seventy-seven times” and then He shares a whole parable regarding the importance of forgiving (Matthew 18:21-35). I am also prone to forgetting Christ has already fully accepted me. I create a list of things for me to say and do that I think will give me an “in” with Jesus, losing sight of the grace He’s covered me in. Yet, in God’s faithfulness, He reminds me there is nothing that can separate me from His love in Christ (Romans 8:38-39).

Peter Was Redeemed By Christ

In Luke 22:31-32, Jesus warns Peter that he is going to fall away. I find Jesus’ words to Peter to be so encouraging. “But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers” (Luke 22:32). Jesus goes on to tell Peter that he will deny Jesus three times, and in Luke 22:54-62, we see him do just that. But praise God, that is not the end of Peter’s story. After Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection, Jesus sits with Peter, and three times asks him “Do you love me?” Each time, Peter responds, “You know that I love you.” Jesus challenges Peter to feed His lambs, take care of His sheep, and feed His sheep. This interaction in John 21:15-17 shows Christ reminding Peter of his calling to love the Church, and we see throughout the New Testament that Peter goes on to share the Gospel with those around Him and lead many to Christ. Why is this so important to us? Because Christ has also redeemed us! Through Peter’s example, I know that despite my past failures, God can and will use me for His glory and to further His Kingdom! I can walk boldly to carry out the Great Commission, knowing the Holy Spirit is actively working in me to renew my spirit.

“So go, make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

Matthew 28:19-20

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Kayla Wright joined the counseling team at Life Training Christian Counseling in May of this year. The passion of her counseling work is to make a meaningful difference in the lives of  TEENS AND PRE-TEENS.

Kayla is nationally licensed as a Christian Counselor by the National Christian Counselors Association, with an advanced board certification in Child & Adolescent Therapy. Kayla gained extensive experience and credibility in providing counseling to teens and pre-teens during her tenure on the staff of Revive Christian Counseling in Owensboro and Madisonville, Kentucky.

Kayla Wright, as well as each of our other counselors, offers convenient sessions at our office in Louisville, Kentucky, as well as online counseling via Zoom or FaceTime. Please click on this link to learn much more about how our COUNSELING FOR TEENS & PRE-TEENin Louisville, Kentucky can help the child you love find the highly-effective, Christ-centered help they need. Contact us today at 502-717-5433, or by email at kayla@lifetrainingcounseling.org

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