Self-preservation is the driving factor for most of humanity. We won't often put ourselves in harms way if we can avoid it. After His arrest, Jesus had to have felt more alone than at any other point in His life up until that point. Where was the cheering crowd who welcome Him just a few short days ago with a King's welcome? Where were the twelve disciples? Where were His three closest disciples? None of them were there with Him, willing to take up their cross next to Him.
The disciple we see featured most prevalently in this part of Jesus' final hours is Peter. Not long before this, Peter declared that there was nothing and no one who could make him forsake Jesus. In fact, he chided Jesus for questioning just how loyal he was. Now, though, Peter feared recognition as a follower of Jesus. Peter thought he could blend in with the same guards who had just arrested Jesus as well as the crowd cheering His arrest. He wanted to disappear in the crowd only because he feared for his own life.
There’s no denying that today's world isn’t as accepting of Jesus and His followers as it once was, but that shouldn’t change or weaken our position in Christ. To Peter’s credit, he did follow Jesus after His arrest, but he kept his distance because he obviously feared for his own life. For us, may that never be so.
Take some time and answer the following questions:
How many times have you thought the same thing as Peter ("NOTHING can make me forsake Jesus")? What has happened that has made you "go back" on that promise?
What is it that you are trying to "preserve" instead of totally selling out for Jesus? How can you let go of that a little more and follow Jesus a little more?
Take a few moments today and write out a prayer to God that lays out your desire to be committed to Him and His Kingdom no matter what life throws at you. When you are done, pray that prayer and set it somewhere that you can see it every day as a reminder to not abandon the God who has never abandoned you.