And the Lord said, “Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.”
When you first read this verse, did you notice what Jesus said: “Satan has asked for you”?! Satan had to ask God for permission to test Simon Peter. This left me in awe as much as it disturbed me. On the one hand it portrays that God is the Highest One (even the devil didn’t dare to tempt Peter without letting God know beforehand), on the other hand it shows us that God gave Satan permission for his devilish plans. Say what now?!
But stick with me for a moment, because Jesus stated more in this verse than the devil’s request. Jesus continues: “But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail.” Now we start seeing the bigger picture: Jesus warns Peter that trials are coming. Then He says that He already prayed for Peter, as to say: “Dearest, danger is on its way, but I prayed for you, so you don’t have to worry.” And it gets even better: “and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.” Mind that Jesus didn’t say ‘if you return to Me.’ He said when! At last, He tells Peter: “strengthen your brethren.” In the end, Peter’s mess will become his message!
Now, I want you to imagine God saying this to you: “Dear daughter! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.”
Yes, you will face temptations. Maybe you’re facing them at this very moment. And, at times, you will fail. But know that Jesus already prayed for you; know that He will not expose you to battles you cannot conquer; and know that His ultimate goal is always to strengthen you (and, through your faith, the people around you).
He wants our mess (read: trials, temptations, battles) to become our message!
What battles do you see coming in your life?
What battles are you facing at the moment? Can you still see that God is good?What mess of yours has become your message?
If you’re having a hard time dealing with your battles, let us know, so we can “strengthen our sisters.” We love you and, most importantly, God loves you! I already thank God for your victory. Your mess WILL become your message!