Devotional Readings for the Day: John 13: 36-38. Morning Psalm 22
Texts: “Will you lay down your life for me? Very truly, I tell you, before the cock crows, you will have denied me three times. (John 13:38).
(There are two devotional readings for today; one for the morning and one for the end of the day. They will be treated in separate Glimpses of Grace.)
One morning, when I was in grade school, my mother came into my room to wake me up for school. Blurry-eyed, I slowly rolled over and said, “The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak!” Where that came from I do not know. My family often took “church sabbaticals”, largely due to work schedules. And, I was definitely not a religious kid; sports were my religion. Nor was I good at memorizing scripture verses. So where the words came from I have no idea!
The morning devotional reading is a part of the exchange between Jesus and Peter. Peter had just pledged his unwavering loyalty to Jesus, but Jesus knew better. He knew who Peter. He knew Peter better than Peter knew himself.
We say that we love Jesus and that our faith is solid, unshakable. Yet, often we, too, falter when following Jesus gets in the way of our safety, security or wealth. Our spirit may be willing but our flesh is indeed weak. Jesus knows this. God knows this. The Psalmist acknowledged this: “God knows we are weak and remembers that we are made of dust”. (Psalm 103: 14)
As we walk in Jesus discipleship we will stumble and fall. We will deny His Lordship of our lives in a variety of subtle and not so subtle ways. But here is the good news: we are forgiven. God picks us up, brushes us off and sets us on the path of discipleship again and again and again. And each time we will do better until we are finally molded into a reflection of Christ.
Lord, I want to be true but I am weak. Teach me. Strengthen me in my weak places. Give me courage. Amen.