“And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat: But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren. And he said unto him, Lord, I am ready to go with thee, both into prison, and to death. And he said, I tell thee, Peter, the cock shall not crow this day, before that thou shalt thrice deny that thou knowest me.” – Luke 22: 31-34 (KJV)
I have a problem child who seems to be placed in my life by God. Or the enemy. On certain days, I’m not sure which of them is responsible. You think Paul had a thorn? Hmph. That was nothing. This person is an entire rose garden, minus the actual flower! It seems like no matter how nice and loving I am… Look, if I wanted to indulge my pettiness, I could actually have a calendar made that had the end of each quarter highlighted because that’s around the time they will act a fool. All of the sudden, I am the “meanest person in the world” in their eyes, having done not a deggnummit thing, and they’ll act like they don’t know me and won’t speak to me for weeks. I know what you’re thinking: kick them to the C.U.R.B.! As much as I hate drama, you think I haven’t tried?? Lord knows I have, and I literally mean that. HE KNOWS. I have been all up in His face regarding this. I have prayed about them so many times. More like “for” them…to go away. I hadn’t heard from them in months until recently. I rolled my eyes and said “Oh lawd, not this again”. I was immediately convicted in my spirit.
Lies. I wasn’t, but I should have been.
This morning, God reminded me about the power and privilege of extending grace. He showed me through scripture how Jesus prayed for and kept Peter near, knowing full well that Peter was going to betray Him. Not by the end of the quarter, but in just a few short hours. He knew He had to keep Peter close regardless. Peter needed Him. Oh lawd.
I know we are not supposed to be ignorant: there are people who cause us harm that we should remove from our lives, but what about the ones who are more of an annoyance than a threat? Who have you been trying to shake like a bad habit? Pray to God about ways you can extend grace. Maybe you’re the person they need to be around. Who knows? Maybe when they get their life right (converted), they’ll be a strength to those around them…even to you. Have a great day!