‘Jesus answered, “If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you? You must follow me.”’ John 21.22
Most of us are experts at comparing ourselves to other people! It was evidently something to which Peter was prone. In this passage, he has just been told about his death – a death, that the author adds, would glorify God (verses 18-19). I’m not sure what your response would be if you were told something like this, but Peter’s first reaction was to point to another disciple and ask about him. Jesus’ reply is actually very releasing; it is along the lines of – ‘Don’t worry about them, I want you to follow me’.
If ever you are tempted to go down the road of comparing yourself to others, recall these words and hear them for yourself – ‘Don’t worry about them, I want you to follow me’.
If you ever wish you were someone else, or more like someone else, you are actually doing a great dis-service to God who took such care to knit you together and to create your inmost being. You can be inspired by others, but the last thing that God wants for you is to be anything other than the person he took such trouble to create.
God’s command to each of us personally is to follow him, and certainly not try to be someone else.
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The Revd John Ryeland, Director of The Christian Healing Mission
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