He committed no sin, neither was deceit found in his mouth. When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly. 1 Peter 2:22-25
Peter learned so much from Jesus. He sinned and Jesus forgave him, and as a result Peter knew the difference from where he once was (a straying sheep) to now being “the Rock” the church was built upon (Matthew 16:18 – an overseer of souls). He was commissioned to share the good news of Jesus with everyone. He labored for peace among the early church, and in the world.
Jesus experienced the difference of those in the Kingdom and those not. I recently saw this quote on Facebook, “Many turn from Jesus because of a bad experience with religious people. Jesus also had a bad experience with religious people. They crucified him.” The way he suffered (Matthew 25:11-14) and died (Mark 15:39) made others take notice. He responded not with threats but with dignity. He acted in accordance with who he was. If we profess to follow Jesus and his way others will notice.
Like Peter, we were once dead in sin and now we are alive in Christ (Galatians 2:20). Once we were lost, but now we’re found, we were in darkness, but now we‘re in the light of God’s presence. We were alone but now we’re members of his church, part of the community of God’s Kingdom. As citizens of God’s Kingdom you are commissioned to spread the good news (Matthew 28:19-20). It will do us well, and the world, if we keep aware of this difference from where we once were and where we are now in Christ. More importantly, as an ambassador from the Kingdom of Heaven what we do and say reflects our citizenship. Does how we live show our allegiance, our priority to and our identity in King Jesus?
The greatest story your life can tell is where you were before knowing Jesus and where you are now that you know him personally. Write out three paragraphs, one about what your life was like before you know Jesus, one on how he brought you into citizenship in his Kingdom and one paragraph on what your life is like now that you know Jesus. Live in that place of grace and entrust yourself to God who judges justly. As these next months unfold, determine to share God’s love as his ambassador through your story and keep the Kingdom growing. Our just and sovereign God will take care of the rest.
By Donna Burns