Have you ever wandered in the wilderness?

I walked in the wilderness for many years – decades, even. I separated myself from Christ. I didn’t go to church. I didn’t study His word. My prayers were of the emergency flare variety. I turned aside from Jesus.

During those years I lived life the way I thought it should be lived. I did what was right in my own sight. It was a dry and barren time. I felt an emptiness, and tried to fill it with things. But it was a soul craving. One that could only be filled with Christ.

SONY DSCAt that time, I was married to a man who was not a Christian, which led me further into the wilderness. He was a smart man, but couldn’t understand how people could believe the Bible – a book he said was just history, written by mere men. It never occurred to me to ask him why he thought that, since he didn’t even own a Bible.

I was young and impressionable at the time, and easily led astray from my deep Christian roots. Easily pulled into the worldly life.

No, I didn’t turn my back on Jesus completely…but I sure acted like I didn’t know Him.

Then came divorce. Eventually I married a wonderful man who loved the Lord. We began going to church. I not only fell in love with this new husband of mine, I fell in love, once again, with Jesus and His word.

But I wondered: How could He possibly use someone like me, who had turned away from Him? Why would He want to?

Simon Peter had done the same thing. He denied Christ not once, but three times! He must have felt the pressure of his predicament the moment Christ looked at him.

‘But Peter said “Man, I do not know what you are talking about.” And immediately, while he was still speaking, a cock crowed. And the Lord turned and looked at Peter…’ Luke 22:60-61a

Then Christ went to the cross. Peter would never see Him again, never be able to say “I’m so sorry I denied You.” Surely, from Peter’s perspective, his actions were unforgivable.

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And yet, there is hope.

When Mary Magdalene and the other women were at the empty tomb, the young man told them “But go, tell His disciples and Peter, ‘He is going ahead of you to Galilee; there you will see Him, just as He told you.’” (Mark 16:7)

Tell His disciples and Peter.

The man who had denied Christ three times. Be sure to tell Peter that Christ is risen. Tell Peter that he will see Christ in Galilee. Tell Peter that Christ wants to see him – Christ wants to restore him!

Tell Peter he is forgiven!

Have you turned away from Christ?

Go, tell His disciples and {insert your name}…
We serve a risen Savior who wants to redeem our wilderness years. He wants our relationship with Him restored.

And that is hope!

Linking up today with Suzie Eller (www.tsuzanneeller.com)

 

Photos by John Chauvin

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