A Work in Progress

By Chris Baxter

Do you sometimes feel hopeless when it comes to getting your "act together" as a Christian?

You think you've failed the Lord miserably, or destroyed your witness thoroughly, or messed up his plans completely.

Well, you're in good company.

Let me remind you of Jesus' disciple, Peter.

He was a young fisherman by trade, and had a "pistol" of a personality.

Peter was the one that spoke BEFORE he thought.

He also was the one who jumped out of the boat to walk on water.

And...he reactively chopped off a Roman soldier's ear.

And then, on one of his worst days, he denied his best Friend three times.

Words to describe him would be spontaneous, impulsive, and immature.

It's safe to say that he didn't have his "act together."


But the good news is this: Jesus chose Peter, as is. While on the earth, Jesus walked with Peter, talked with Peter, corrected Peter, encouraged Peter, and affirmed Peter. What gives me great hope is that the God-man was able to see this young follower not only "as is", but also what he was going to be.

Peter was a work-in-progress.


And goodness, how he did progress! We can find the rest of Peter's faith-walk in the book of Acts, where the Holy Spirit entered in and transformed him. Amazingly, the same man that shouted, "I don't know Him!" and ran for his life the night Jesus was betrayed, later became the man that took his stand (Acts 2:14) and proclaimed Him as the resurrected Lord and Savior. As a result, about three thousand were added to their number that day (Acts 2:41). And that was just the beginning of his ministry! We can observe how he matured into a great leader through reading his God-inspired letters, 1 and 2 Peter.

Peter's growth that spanned over decades of his life should encourage us!

Jesus CHOSE him when he was not much older than an out-of-control teenager. But through the grace of our Savior, and the power of His Spirit, God did great things in and through him.

And He will do the same with any willing heart.

Don't give up. Allow God's word to mature you and his Spirit to mold you, daily, weekly, monthly, yearly.

Take hope in the fact that you are His beautiful work-in-progress.



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Daily Prayer

Speaking...without words

The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge. There is no speech or language where their voice is not heard. Their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world.  Psalm 19:1-4

Dear Lord,

Your creation speaks...without words! The sun shouts, "Marvelous Maker;" the moon proclaims, "Faithful Sustainer," the stars sing, "Light of the World!" Cause each of us to gaze at your beauty, recognize you as the Author and Artist, and then worship you with reverence, all day and all night. Amen.