When You Have Turned Back

Thursday, August 17, 2023
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Listen while you read: "Master The Tempest Is Raging"1 (Lyrics)

In my devotions today, the question was asked, "Do you feel inferior?" I had to think about that for awhile, because there was a time in my youth when I did feel inferior, as most teenagers do at times. But as for now, at first, I didn't think so, but it didn't seem that I could get that out of my head.

Later, as I read the parable of the ten virgins, I saw myself in a different light. You may remember that five virgins were wise and brought enough oil for the lamps so that they would be shining when the bridegroom came. The other five were foolish, and they had to go and buy more. While they were gone, the bridegroom came, and they were left in the dark. Guess who I identified with? You're right if you said the five dumbbells. I started to reflect on other things and which side that I came down on. When Jesus took the disciples with Him to pray, and when He returned, they were sleeping, and guess who was wiping the sleep from her eyes? Hey, I even understand the poor guy who was given only one talent. After all, he was just doing what he thought was best.

Then, I thought of poor Simon Peter. He was quite the guy. When the soldiers came to get Jesus to crucify Him, he cut the ear off the high priest's servant. Later, when people pointed to him and said, "Aren't you one of Jesus' followers?" Peter denied Him three times, just as the Lord had predicted. Hmmm, would that be something that I would do? Like Peter beforehand at the Last Supper of our Lord, I would stand and say, "Lord, I am ready to go with you to prison and to death." (Luke 22:33 NIV) But would I? Have I ever failed miserably after feeling so proud of myself? I certainly have. But what I like about Peter's story is what Jesus told Simon Peter just before He predicted his denials:

Luke 22:31-32 – Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers. (NIV)

Hey, there is hope for me, because every time when I come back, my heart is softened toward my brothers and sisters. Then, I can tell them, "I know how you feel." I have forgotten to get oil for my lamp. I have been asleep as Satan sneaked up on me, and I closed my eyes to the power of God. To be on the safe side, I have hidden my talent for fear of being rejected. It seemed right at the time! Dear sisters and brothers, I have failed my Lord more times than I can count, but He tells me that when I turn back, He has a job for me to do. May the Lord help us to strengthen our brothers and sisters!

Prayer: Dearest Lord, keep us from giving up after we have failed. Even though we are never worthy of Your love, holy God, thank You that You grant us mercy, even when we betray You. When we turn back, help us to show love to others as Jesus did. Amen.

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About the author:

Jeanie Nihiser <jnihiserj@gmail.com>
Cerro Gordo, Illinois, USA

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Well said, thank you!

    Thanks….that hits home.

    Thank you for your reminder.

    Thanks, Jeanie, for the encouraging words.

    Good one Jeanie. So true.

    Oh yes Peter? I find great comfort and yet identity with him. Blessings.

    Another very well-written devotional, Jeanie…you express how many of us react and feel.

    What a beautifully written and conceived reminder. Thank you, Jeanie,
    (ON, Canada)

    Wow Jeanie. I can so relate to your message today! Thanks for writing it and sharing it. Think of you often.

    Thanks for today’s devotional. Failing is not the worst thing. Never to have tried is. Blessings on you.

    Thank you, Jeanie, for sharing this encouraging devotional with us. Oh ouch! This is a “me too” moment for me. Blessings.

    Jeanie – thank you for today’s devotional – for your honest assessment of yourself and us. Mostly, thank you for your prayer which I so identify with.

    Thank you for the devotional you shared today. Perfect timing because I have been feeling overwhelmed and unworthy of God’s love. You helped to provide a light unto my path.

    Thank you, Jeanie, for your mindful writing today. We are so fortunate that when we make the wrong move or action our loving Lord is ready to forgive us and get us back on track. God bless you for doing these devotionals.

    Good morning, Jeanie.
    Wow, this is good, and I am thankful I am not alone with my actions and oh so good to know we have a Father who loves, forgives, and uses us to help others.
    God bless.

    Good morning, Jeanie.
    I was wondering where your title was going to take me. It is a great message that we all need to be reminded of. You chose some very good examples from the Bible to encourage us to always turn back even when we have let God down.
    Thanks for sharing your feelings and thoughts on this subject. Blessings.

    Inferior no, but weak and needy, yes.

    Thanks, Jeanie. I’m right there with you! But God can use our failures to help others.

    Jeanie – you sure know how to push all my faith buttons. What a romp through our journey with Christ you have provided.
    Praise the Lord that you choose to share devotionals.

    Very well put.

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