Though I thought this blog was a thing of the past, I am so moved by the simple truth the Lord struck me with this morning, I am compelled to share it. As I read through Luke 22, a previously unhighlighted (i.e. unappreciated) verse leapt off the page at me.
“Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift you as wheat. 32 But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.” Luke 22:31-32
Recalling the story of Job, and knowing that Satan our adversary is as a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8), I was not surprised by Satan’s asking to sift Peter. What struck me so profoundly was Jesus’ statement, “but I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail.” (vs. 32). Jesus, our eternal Lord and Savior prayed for Simon Peter by name. He knew Simon Peter was going to stumble and He was interceding on his behalf, that his faith would be strengthened. The simple yet profound truth that our precious Jesus intercedes for me personally as I struggle to follow Him in obedience overwhelmed me this morning. Immediately more of His Word flooded my heart and mind, affirming its truth.
“but because Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood. Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.” Hebrews 7:24-25
He always, perpetually, continually, consistently, constantly, eternally lives to intercede for you and me, what an awesome blessed truth! As I struggle with discouragement as I regularly stumble and fall while seeking to walk with Him, he is praying for continual strengthening of my faith, ensuring the success of my journey with Him.
Just as He told Peter, I am also reminded of our responsibility to be transparent with one another, sharing with, testifying to and encouraging one another for mutual strengthening. Jesus instructed Peter, “And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.” (vs 32). Our testimony of Christ’s redemption and restoration from our failures is to be used for the strengthening of our brothers and sisters.
What a blessed truth to start this week with, Jesus prays for me! I pray you are equally blessed by that truth today.
23 Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. 25 Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching. Hebrews 10:23-25