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Scripture: John 1:42 “ And when Jesus beheld him, He said, "You are Simon the son of Jona: you shall be called Cephas, which is by interpretation, A stone."

Peter was originally called Simon.  When Jesus first met Peter, He saw his potential and knew that God wanted to do mighty works in Peter's life.  Yet before Peter reached the state that God intended for him, he faced many failures.  Even after Peter received a revelation from God the Father in Heaven that Jesus was the Son of God, Jesus found it necessary to rebuke Peter.  Jesus had described His own sufferings that were to come and that He would be killed but raised to life again on the third day.  This was God’s necessary plan for the redemption of humanity, but Peter took Jesus aside and declared that he would never allow anything to happen to Jesus.  Jesus told Peter, "Get thee behind me, Satan: you are an offense to me" (Matthew 16:23).  Peter was giving into the carnal issues and missing the spiritual necessity of the matter.

Later, Peter denied the Lord three times, cursing and swearing that he did not even know Jesus.  Peter was also very impulsive, as in the situation when he cut off the ear of the servant of the High Priest.  Yet despite all of Peter's faults, God had a future and a hope for him and planned for him to stand one day before thousands of people and preach the message of Jesus Christ.  Through Peter’s sermon thousands repented and were added to the church (Acts 2:47).

From the beginning of your life, God had plans and a purpose for you individually.  Philippians 2:13 says, “For it is God which works in you, both to will and to do, of His good pleasure.”  The moment He breathed life into you, He began to sovereignly work to bring His desired plans to fruition.  Jeremiah 29:11 says that God's plan for you is designed for good and not evil.  God even sacrificed His Son Jesus, His most precious possession, to give you an abundant life, a future, and a hope.  His ultimate goal is to make you an expression of Himself.  As God works in you, He works patiently as a potter does with clay and from time to time remakes you over and over again.  He works tirelessly, cleansing you of your sins and forgiving you of your faults.

God was patience and determined as He worked with Peter.  He is just as determined as He works in you.  He does not expect you to be perfect, just pliable in His hands.  Seasons of discouragement may come, but whatever the enemy means for evil in your life, God causes it to be for good.  "All things work together for good to those who love God and are called according to His purpose" (Romans  8:28).  Remember Jesus' words to Peter, "You are Simon right now, but when I am finished with you, you will be Cephas or a rock."  Your future is inside of you.  Like Peter, you may see yourself as a common person right now, but as you surrender to God and allow Him to complete His will and His good pleasure in you, you will become as solid a stone.  +++

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