Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Do You Love Me?

The Lord asked Simon Peter, "Do you love me?"  Peter replied, "Yes Lord you know that I love you." Jesus said to Peter, "Feed my lambs." and again Jesus asked Peter, "Simon, son of John, do you truly love me?"  Peter answered, "Yes Lord, you know that I love you." Jesus said, "Take care of my  sheep."  When Jesus asked Peter the third time, "Do you love me?" Peter was deeply hurt, he replied, "Lord you know all things; you know that I love you."   Jesus then went on to tell Peter that he will endure a life of suffering, he will be dressed by someone else, and he will be lead where he does not want to go.  Jesus then told Peter "Follow me."  and Peter did.  What I find encouraging about Peter is that is that all through out the Gospel, Peter's faithfulness towards the Lord wavered.  We all know the story of Peter denying the Lord three times.  There was the time when Peter fell asleep while the Lord went to pray in Gethsemane after the Lord told him "stay awake and pray".  Paul confronted Peter in Galatians 2:14 "you are a Jew, yet you live like a Gentile and not a Jew. How is then, you force Gentiles to follow Jewish customs?".  Through all this Jesus believed that  Peter's faith was so firm that he gave him the name Cephas (Peter is the Greek translation of Cephas.) meaning rock.  Peter loved the Lord and each time he stumbled he picked himself back up and kept on fighting the good fight. Even through his stumbling Peter was an amazing advocate for the Lord and preached to thousands of Jews. 

Peter's life ends in Rome, where it is said that he was imprisoned for for nine months, in absolute darkness, he endured torture tied to a post. In spite of all the suffering Peter was subjected to he converted his two of his jailers, and forty-seven others.

The Roman Emperor Nero, the enemy of God went on a mission to slaughter the apostles. Because of this mission, Peter was crucified upside down while in Rome.
During the last hours of his life, it is said that Peter, saw his own wife being carried away to her unimaginable pain staking death, he rejoiced because he knew then she would be reunited with him.  Hanging upside down on the cross Peter called to his wife, comfortingly, addressing her by name, and saying, "O thou, remember the Lord."

Peter had no idea the cost, but for him it wasn't about this life. Is was not about the shaky faith.  Peter was able to endure this life for the same reason the Lord was able to endure the cross.  It is for the joy that was set before them.  The joy set before them was not the happiness of this life here on earth.  The joy set before them was John 3:16  For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 

In the late night of October 13, 2011, laying in bed with this gut wrenching pain I had no idea number 1. Why! this had to happen to me and number 2. how difficult the journey is.  I had no idea the lonleiless, the tiredness, the anger, the chaos, the knots, the missing, the wishing.  I in no way can compare my life to the sufferings of the apostles, but I do believe the loss of a child is one of the hardest events one can endure.  There is no ending to the suffering in this world.  Our grief group was sent the question...what does love mean to you?  When I say CHOOSE love, I choose to look beyond this side of heaven and I choose to believe in the promises of the Lord.  I can endure Kelsie's loss, I can endure the chaos, the missing, the knots, the wishing, the anger, the tiredness, the loneliness, because of the joy set before me.  It is because of John 3:16 that I am able to, in midst of all this pain, love my husband more today than I did six months ago.  Because Christ endured the cross I can live this life of suffering with a soft heart and a true love for others.  Because of this promise, I do not have to bury my daughters death with her, but I can move on with her spirit beside me and take this gift with me where ever the journey leads me.  Does the joy set before me, take away the pain, the hurt, the anger...not always, not usually but through Christ's strength and through Christ's love the pain, hurt and anger are all endurable.


  1. Praise God for "the joy set before us"...when everything has been stripped away this is the truth that brings HOPE. That brings Strength. God Bless you today my sweet friend.

  2. You inspire me to the depths of my soul. Love you Summer.

  3. I have been having a really hard time the last week and I was talking about it yesterday in our grief group. When I got home I read this blog and it answered alot of my worries. So if you can endure all of this so can I. Sometimes my mind goes to that place where worrying is all I can do. I just have to keep reminding myself that I have no control. I have to tell myself that the pain and sadness you are feeling is okay. I cant fix it but God can and he is, but that doesnt mean it will go away. All I can do is be there for you. I saved a text from you that I got on October 14, we had already left Meredith and Jasons and were at a nasty restaurant staring at our food. It said " I love you sister. I am so thankful you are less then 20 miles away!! We are all going to make it through this, stronger and better I just know it!!" I had no idea how that could possibly happen but God is taking care of that. I know he is , I love you!!!!

  4. Fallen asleep now that we have Jesus and the promise of eternal life. How nice. God is so good. Death is no more. Our loved ones soul that has gone on before us are with our one and only Jesus.

  5. I'm not sure how i found your blog but i'm so glad i did!! I've been encouraged,inspired and uplifted geatly tonight. wow!!! God is good! may we all in christ keep fighting the good fight...