My Dad has a talent for teaching God’s word (oblivious as though he might be)
So when I knew I was going on “maternity leave” from my blog, I asked if he’d like to write devotionals for emails or posts for me to schedule. He said he would as God laid on his heart, and when he handed me his notes and said God gave him a “little something” I was blown away.
I knew this needed to be posted, for far more people than are on my email list.
The title, “Being Sifted”, at first made me think of the story in the Bible where the chaff is sifted from the wheat. And of course, made me think of the “good” being sifted from the “bad”. But his take left me pondering so much more. And made me realize that while God may allow things to happen in our lives, it doesn’t mean he forgot.
When Jesus told Peter that Satan desired him to sift him as wheat, He didn’t tell him that He delivered him. Or that He rebuked him. But that he prayed for him, that his faith wouldn’t fail.
What does this tell us?
- Satan pretty much doesn’t do anything without God’s knowledge and approval.
- God doesn’t always get us out of trials – but He always gets us through them.
Normally wheat is sifted to separate the grain from the husks. Satan wanted to sift Peter and keep what was bad.
Jesus foes on to tell Peter hos he will be sifted in verse 34, how he would deny The Lord 3 times before the day was done. Peter was one of the most outspoken, boisterous apostles. He was a fisherman. If you have ever known a commercial fisherman, think of Peter.
I’m sure that denying Jesus would be the last thing on Peter’s mind, if he would cut off the high priest’s servant’s ear before the day was done (John 18:10)!
Did Peter’s faith fail when he denied Jesus? I don’t think so, he did deny Jesus in Luke 22:61, but his faith didn’t fail. He had a temporary setback, he wept bitterly. After the resurrection (when Peter was converted) he went on to become one of the greatest witnesses for Christ the world has ever known. His shadow falling on people would cause them to be healed (Acts 15:5).
Peter went on to be crucified upside down for his lord (he said he wasn’t worthy to be crucified like Jesus).
So when you think that your faith has failed, remember Simon Peter, whose faith was sifted, but didn’t fail.