Pastor's Wife, Mom, Writer & Imperfect Seeker of Jesus
But What About You?
July 22, 2018
Red Letter Series
“When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, ‘Who do people say the Son of Man is?’”
They replied, ‘Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.’
‘But what about you?’ He asked. ‘Who do you say I am?’
Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.’
Jesus replied, ‘Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by flesh and blood, but by my Father in heaven. And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.’” (Matthew 16:13-18)
This was the passage that Ryan began his sermon with last Sunday. As he started his message, he shared about how during his preparation, four or five words had jumped out at him from this text. So of course, being the attentive pastor’s wife that I am, I ignored what he had to say next and hurriedly looked back through the text to see if I could figure out what words he was referring to.
Almost without realizing it, I was no longer sitting in my nice comfy stackable burgundy chair. Instead, I could sense the heat rising in the dry air and feel the dust in my nose from the cracked dirt road. There were others around who were speaking, but He turned and looked pointedly at me.
“But what about you?” Oh my goodness, I can’t even breathe. I can feel my chest tightening. He’s looking straight into my very soul.
Um, my mouth starts to form the answer I’ve learned since childhood Sunday School...”Jesus.” But the word falters on my lips. I know this answer. I know what I’ve been taught. I know what the greatest of evangelists have preached.
I take a breath to try again, but His eyes intensify as He continues, “Who do YOU say I am?”
I shuffle my feet in the dirt. When was the last time I really thought about that? I move in and out of each day taking what comes, facing the storms, but not registering His presence. But now He was asking me directly.
Lately there have been days when I’ve been so tired and overwhelmed by life’s busyness that I almost cry getting up in the morning, and You have been the Strength to get me through the hours and face what lies ahead. (Isaiah 40:29)
On those monotonous days when the sameness is broken by a text or an email coming through my phone that makes me burst out in audible giggles, You are surely my Laughter-giver. (Job 8:21)
When my emotions get the best of me and I feel lonely and like there is no one who can really understand me, I know that you are always waiting and available to talk with me as a Friend. (John 15:15) You’re never too tired. It’s never too late. You’re never too busy.
As our church grows and the demands for my husband sometimes overwhelm me, You have become the Lover of my soul. (Jeremiah 31:3) I can rest in Your embrace and feel special.
Each time that I fail You, you never push me aside in disgust, but instead, You accept my cries of mercy and You hold me in my wretchedness and make me new and clean again. (Psalm 51:7)
And just this week when I laid before you a burden I had been bearing, yet still stubbornly demanded that you reveal a very specific word to me three times before I would believe what YOUR will in it was, You in fact did just that, causing the hairs on the back of my neck to stand up in awe. And then just to make sure I hadn’t missed anything, You’ve since revealed this random word a total of SIX times in four days. You are so intimately El Roi, the God who sees me. (Genesis 16:13)
So what about me? Who do I say You are? Well, You are my everything. You meet every need. You see every hurt. You know every nook and cranny of my inmost being.
Yes, there is no doubt about it, You are the Christ. But not just that, You are MY Christ.
Funny thing...it turned out those weren’t even the four words Ryan was referring to. But they were the words I needed to hear.