This one goes out to all you ladies.
If you have been a Christian for any amount of time, you have experienced it. The Proverbs 31 challenge. The drive to "be all you can be." The feeling that perhaps the problem lies within you, and that if you just pulled it together, you too could have it all, my friends. The perfect husband, the kids, the clean house, the car, the job, the life.
All of it is lies.
No matter who in your church it is you think of when you hear this, I am telling you (and I can think of more than one lady,) the truth is, she is not as together as you think. No matter how cute her outfits are, she too has days when she is not so cute, and she is super glad that no one sees it.
So what is the point of all this?
It's sooo not about anyone else. Our faith is not about comparing ourselves to the guy sitting next to us at church. It's not about making ourselves feel better or worse than them. It is totally about relating to Jesus in a more personal way. (I feel a story coming on...)
So I feel a kindred with my man, Peter, the disciple. He tends to get confused or nervous, and when he does, he tends to do or say inappropriate things. And I for one, can totally relate to this.
So in the beginning of Mark 9, Jesus takes his closest friends (his entourage, if you will allow,) and he takes them up on the mountain. Here, in my opinion, is one of the most awkward parties one could be invited to in their time.
The next thing you know, Jesus' clothes become really really white. Way whiter than Clorox can ever hope to make clothes clean. What was happening? Jesus was revealing His holiness. His "God" was showing and He brings Moses and the prophet Elijah down to the mountain. Now, just reading this, I am uncomfortable. I do not know why, maybe it is the whole grand-ness of the action, but I shift awkwardly. And then there is my friend Peter.
Oh, how truly awkward. Your friend, Jesus has just done this awesome thing. What do you say? Do you pat him on the back and say, well done? What is the appropriate response? Peter chooses to suggest they build a tent for everyone so the people can come visit everyone here. My friend Kristin pointed out that this means that Peter saw Jesus as equals with the other two. I also think this makes all three into a circus attraction. Either way, Peter has flubbed.
But does Jesus smack the fire out of Peter? Does He look at Moses and Elijah and say, "I don't know how this guy got here, he's not with me?" No. Jesus totally claimed Peter as one of his closest friends, even when Peter said or did stupid things. It is interesting to me that the Peter we see in the Gospels is almost nothing like the Peter we see in the book of Acts. He grows a great deal into a man who spends less time on one leg (because he has his foot in his mouth,) and more time serving Jesus and building up the church the way he promised.
Jesus wants to do that with us, too. No matter what you are struggling with, Jesus wants to work with you. If you'll let Him, He can take you places just like He did with Peter. And while I still feel like I am a work in process and I am still more of a mess than a (wo)man of God, I know that God has a plan to bless my mess.