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Rock Bottom: Getting Back on the Path

Angelo Grasso

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Angelo Grasso

Director of resources for STRIDE

Conference

Recorded

  • December 20, 2007
    2:30 PM
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him precious father in heaven Lord we thank you again for your word and now as we talk about Peter I pray that his life will be a living example for us Lord speak to us about your love and revere your character to us today in the name of your precious son we pray and okay you have your worksheet here let's turn our Bibles to Luke chapter twenty two verses thirty one to thirty four now we'll just set the scene it's Passover in Jerusalem and Jesus know that he's about to be betrayed he knows he's about to suffer he knows he's about to be crucified and he's about to spend this last moment with his disciples if you ever want to read some of the most moving words of Christ read the last moments of his time with his disciples these are the moments where he wants to share the most important thing he can with them because he knows that he's going away and he wants them to remember the last words and severely have Luke chapter twenty two inside out for the supper Jesus showed them the service of humility by washing their feet they broke bread together and now the disciples are starting to dispute among themselves about who would be the greatest in the kingdom of God because you see Jesus just a few days before I entered Jerusalem on a donkey in the triumphal entry and they were ready to crown him King and the disciples were so excited because they knew that the organ of the odd part of the leadership team they knew that when then when the new Kingdom was enemy are certain that they will be able to stand on stage maybe one would get to give a seminar maybe someone also had to give a nice little speech maybe someone out where a name tag that is something I like disciple or special disciple as a decided tendency among themselves when God establishes would use establishes his new kingdom cool with him in any hierarchy so whose enemy the VP whose innovative public relations relations director and they started to argue amongst themselves they had a misunderstanding of the nature of the kingdom answer here Jesus is trying to explain to them what's really can happen if China strengthened that he is to be betrayed that their benefits they can and let's pick up the story in verse twenty nine on Cyprus thirty one and it says and the Lord said to Peter Simon Simon indeed Satan has asked for you that he may sift you as wheat but I have prayed for you that your faith should not fail and when you are converted strengthen your brethren but she said to him Lord I am ready to go with you both to prison and to that and he said I tell you Peter the rooster shall not crow this day before you will deny me three DI three times that you know me Peter stands up and he says to Jesus Jesus I will go to prison and death for you basically what Peter is telling to this is that I love you you think that they love Jesus I believe he loves you but the kind of love that Peter was professing for Jesus what kind of luck you think he was professing for Jesus he was professing ungodly love in other words he was professing the kind of love this has greater love has no man than this that he went laying down his life for his him so here's that he says that Jesus I pray you I will follow you to the prison I will follow you that I got ready you but is there a difference between love and sentiment in other words it was processing agape but he didn't really have agape a lot of times we think that we have love for God but really all we have his sentiments in other words we appreciate God we are moved by God we really enjoy being around people who also appreciate and enjoy God but are we really willing to live for God they love means that I would rather die than dishonor you that is the kind of love that God has for us and that is the kind of love that he's asking from each one of his disciples and the greatest manifestation of this love here on our one of the greatest manifestations of urine it is a commitment called merits anybody who married okay for you you may talk about the marriage commitment because the marriage commitment is a commitment to adopt a love and is the kind of commitment that Jesus is asking from each one of his disciples when is it that a couple crosses the line from singlehood single life to married life will will let site like this I asked my wife to marry me in two thousand two as she said yes I got not what they have to I propose there and she said yes she called me on the phone and she said listen you know what I know that I said yes yesterday but I slept on it and I woke up and I really don't think you want from me would that be wrong you know that would not be wrong it shoots Shirley and her heart did not feel like I was the one for her she needs to tell me that not the one for her that is not wrong at all now what if two months into the engagement we would actually picked out and reserved the church and the reception hall with two months eighteen days when we party ticket out the invitations and colors she calls me on the phone she says you know I've been thinking about it and I'm not ready to marry you I want to collect engagement without the wrong know that would be right that would be acceptable that would be necessary what is two weeks before the wedding invitations are sent to casinos and dresses are ordered people have purchased tickets my wife comes to me all night my cat becomes Mrs. listen I noticed to Lisa for the wedding and everything but I can't marry without the wrong know because I messed up but it would not be wrong what is the day of the letting I am standing there with my check Seo looking waiting for the doors to open and I get a little note how you know what I'm not ready to marry you that would be really messed up but it would not Ron it would not be wrong when you cross the line when do you class what a lot of preachers preaching his marriage sermon she says I can do it without drawing no what when when this winter saying that the unity sign in or join the candle and she said I can do it would not be wrong no when you cross the line you cross the line when you say I Angela take you Kathy to be my lawfully wedded wife to have and to hold in sickness and in health in good times and bad for richer or poorer to we are part of his by that that's when you cross the line the marriage commitments isn't that commitments and other doesn't sound to find but it's really beautiful the marriage commitment is a death commitment what you are saying before God and before your wife and you are husband and before the congregation is this I would rather die than dishonor the vows that I have just meeting what you're saying on that wedding day and when you say till death do us part two we are parted by that is I would rather die than make you cry I would rather die than turn my back on you I would rather die than she on you the marriage commitment isn't that commitment there are some cultures when after a couple gets married the very next thing that they do is they go to the graveyard and by their plots next to each other because what they're saying is we are together will that is an example of godly godly love and that is the example of the kind of commitment that uses asking from us as his disciples he wants us to come to the point in our relationship with Jesus what we say to him Jesus I am ready to cross the line I am ready to say before you and before the world that I would rather die than dishonor you and you could be that the reason where experiencing such little spiritual growth is because were still dating around could it be that on the weekends or when we are at an CYC conference the love is stirred up and the emotionally stirred up and the feelings are stirred up but when we go home in the romance fades our commitment also fades the commitments that commitments is a commitment of agape love I went off on a tangent of get back to Peter okay so she would have Peter and Peter is professing his agape love now Jesus so like Peter their words is like Peter the first way we are like Peter is that like Peter we begin with misconceptions about ourselves like Peter we begin with miss conceptions about ourselves in other words when Jesus came and total and predicted that his disciples would betray him Peter said I would never betray you Peter says how can you even conceive of the idea that I would fill you Jesus Peter did not even conceive of the idea that he could ever you know Jesus Christ he sent Jesus I will never leave you I will never forsake you as you think Peter was sincere and that proclamation yes he was very sincere he truly believed that he would not say Jesus it was because she could Peter at a misconception about himself and like Peter we all begin with misconceptions about ourselves and so Jesus says three things to preempt peters proclamation there are three things that Jesus says it's in Luke chapter twenty two in verse thirty one it says and the Lord said Simon Simon indeed Satan has asked for you that he may sift you as wheat but I have prayed for you that your faith should not fail and when you have returned to me strengthen your brethren so there are three things that Jesus says to preempt the proclamation of Peter the first thing he says is Satan has desired to suit you in other words you are going to go through very tough time in the near future you can go through a tough time Satan has desired to sixty since Satan has just heard this broad promise that you've given me that he would never leave me or forsake me that you would go to prison indefinitely Satan knows the public and the commitment he made and when you fail Satan 's been around in when you fail Satan to start whispering in your ear and he says that saying you're not worth your session of failure you should just kill yourself to now that Satan had his way right now you know he wants the disease everyone of us he wants to take us out Satan wants you to die and you know the manner by which they want you to die suicide Satan wants you to show yourself because he knows that that will bring the greatest pain to Jesus and so Satan is constantly whispering and your ears trying to give you thought of suicide and each one of us sometimes I know have been caught by surprise by the thoughts that we entertain about killing myself I know a lot of times in our moments of deepest despair in our moments of deepest failure we are surprised by the fact that we are even allowing ourselves to think about such as this life just isn't worth it it'd be so much easier if you're just dead you should just end my friends Satan wants you to carry his and this is why Jesus said Satan has desired to safety Satan when you fail is really going to renovating and then Jesus gives this beautiful statement but I have prayed for you but I have prayed for you when Jesus is saying is I know that it can happen and when it happens I want you to know something I'm still on your side when it happens I want you to know that I'm knocking to give up on when it happens I want to know I knew it wouldn't have been and I still love you just the same Jesus wants Peter to remember that he's not going to give up on him but I have prayed for you and then finally Jesus says into him and when you are converted what strength in your brother in other words when Jesus says as you're about to go through one of the most terrible experiences of your life you're about to enter the darkest night of your soul and you know what when it's all said and done I want you to use it I want you to use the deepest failure I want you to use the greatest wounds for the sake of your friends for the sake of your brothers and sisters I want you to use your rock-bottom experience so that you can help others out of their rock-bottom experience now it's easy for us to criticize Peter and when we think of Peter to think of him as just like this ignorant you know hottie fisherman full of pride as his guide is this really quick to speak but before we criticize Peter and his misunderstanding of the nature of the kingdom of God we should ask ourselves could it be that we have a misunderstanding of our own selves could it be that we don't really know what we're capable or incapable of because the true test has not yet come Jesus knows that were self-deluded Jesus knows that we don't really understand what we're capable or incapable of and so he wants to provide permission for us and this is how he does it first Peter three what was working and what was Peter 's default home first the first thing he hopes for was that God will do what I've always wanted him to do otherwise Peter believe like a fantasy that God is in and do what I've always wanted sensitive you can restore the kingdom on earth and then he's going make me vice president and then we're going to go in you'll be on the Romans and everything is going to go smoothly have you ever like that experiencing a personal relationship with like Hope everything is going to go nice and smooth now that I've accepted Christ into my life now that I've like broken on my CDs that you know now that I've now that you have decided to be a vegetarian it's also cynical nice and smooth I start reading the Bible every day people are going to be really convicted by the stuff that I say I'm to go to my church and on and bring revival there his hope was that God will do everything he's always wanted to do a second hope was that life will be as I have always wanted it to be life will be as I have always wanted to be and a lot of times before we experienced a rock-bottom experience we are deluded by thinking that life will be what I've always wanted to be at twenty three I get married at twenty five I have a child at twenty seven I don't know what you ideas but we all have this vision for what our life will be like and Peter had that same vision for his life and there I will finally be the person I've always wanted to be I will finally be the person I've always wanted to be here believed that it was just a short matter of you before he became that person that he knew he was supposed to be and yes only hours after Jesus made after Peter makes this profession only hours after Peter proclaims all these things about his agape love he finds himself in a place that he never thought she would be yes if not your question that's a very good way to get there and I'm glad you brought that up the difference between self-delusion and adopt the reality of the gospel so I imagine when you get to that so here three short hours later and he's doing what he never thought he would do he's become the person he's never thought he would be Jesus is arrested and about to be crucified and life is completely not what he thought it was so like Peter there's the next like Peter it says like Peter God allows a crisis of truth to reveal what we are really made us like Peter God allows a crisis of truth to review what we are really made of in other words Peter was elated to see Peter believe that I am rich and increased endurance and in need of nothing and yet he did not realize that he was wretched miserable poor blind and naked and Jesus allowed a crisis of truth to prepare instant to reveal who he really was now is this the first time that is a lot of crisis of truth and the life of Peter can you think of another experience in the life of Peter in which Jesus allowed a crisis of truth you know what he was really made of what was that other experience walking on water Peter stepped out in faith he had success for a while and yet she began to trust in himself and Jesus allowed Peter to begin to think so that he could realize that he needed a Savior Jesus allowed that crisis of truth to prepare his heart so that he could understand that he really wasn't everything he professed that he was and if you read the desire of ages the chapter called night on the late you will reason that that spirit of prophecy says that had he learned the lesson that Jesus was trying to teach him that night on the lake he would not have failed when the great test of his life came so Jesus allowed this crisis of truth to reveal who he really was and yet Peter was not willing to learn the lesson of the crisis had he learned the lesson of the crisis on the lake he would not have failed when the great tests came let's continue to read the story here so he goes to the Garden of Gethsemane they are praying Jesus comes and he betrays him and here we have Jesus come into the court that was talk about where Peter went wrong Peter was willing to fight for Jesus you like to cut a soldier 's ear off for Jesus and yet he am as well as all the other disciples scattered now let's find out where Peter went wrong verse fifty four sixty four of the chapter him arrested him they let him and brought him into the high priest house but Peter followed what at a distance because they let him to the house to the courtroom to the court but Peter followed at a distance about the first place where Peter went wrong if you followed at a distance now is the first step towards his failure is he wanted to follow you we didn't want to be so close that people wouldn't maybe Krauthammer or even ridicule him and was not afraid to fight for Jesus but desiring to says that when it came to being ridiculed for Jesus he revealed himself to be a coward he was willing to fight with swords and spears for Jesus he was willing to hurt someone for Jesus but he wasn't willing to be made fun of for Jesus so the first baseman Ron was he followed from a distance what is the next place the next area where Peter would run for sixty five says now when they had kindled a fire in the midst of the courtyard and sat down together seeing Peter sat among the coldest Peterson among the Yahoo Peter sat among Peter sat among the mama who went and grabbed Jesus by force and cook him to that place so the first place you were wrong was he followed from a distance the second-place you were wrong as he mingled with the mob he thought that he was strong enough to mingle with the mob and to blend in with the mob and not be noticed first he followed from a distance and second she mingled Mann Fred and third place where Peter when Ron is that he forgot the words of Jesus this is a freedom recipe sicknesses and a certain servant girl and assessor window seeing him as he sat by the fire looked intently at him and said this man was also with him but he denied him saying women I do not know him fifty eight and after little while and others saw him and said you also are of them but Peter said man I am not then after about an hour had passed another confidently affirmed saying shortly this fellow also was with him for he is a Galilean but Peter said man I do not know what you are saying and then the Bible says that immediately the rooster crows Peter in defense in his own defense forgot the words of Jesus and forgetting the word of Jesus he did exactly what he promised Jesus he would never do he did exactly what he promised Jesus he would never do and this verse depicts the darkest moments in the life of Peter this verse depicts the deepest wounds ever inflicted upon Peter and it was a self inflicted and yet the beauty of the gospel is revealed in the very next words it says immediately while he was still speaking the rooster crowed when the roosters crow in the morning darkest moments of our experience the coldest moments of the night is the moment just before dawn and so here in the midst of Peter is the deepest and darkest failure Jesus stands a rooster and what that rooster means is the morning is coming I want to review article from the desire of ages speaking about this it's from the chapter index court of Caiaphas and it reads while the team while the degrading alts were fresh upon Peter 's list and the shrill crowing of the cock was still ringing in his ears the Savior turned from the frowning judges and looked so upon his poor disciple at the same time Peter 's eyes were drawn to his master so here we happier you think I don't know the man I don't know the man legally greatly I don't know the man cock a doodle do and as soon as Peter turns he sees that Jesus be broken bloody ensnaring right at it says the side of that pale suffering face those quivering lips that look of compassion and forgiveness peers his heart like an arrow in that gentle countenance he read the pity and sorrow but there was no anger there in other words when Peter denied Christ and he said I do not know the man and the rooster crowed anytime inside his edges is looking at him Jesus wasn't looking at him like those Jesus I like come on man it says that Jesus was looking at him with pity and sorrow and love it was bad luck that saves Peter it says that Peter called to mind his promise in a few short hours before that he would go with his Lord to prison and said that he remembered his grief when the Savior told him in the upper chamber that he would deny his Lord thrice that same night Peter had just declared that he Jesus but he now realized with bitter grief how well his Lord and how accurately he had read his heart the falseness of which was unknown even to him a child of memories rushed over him the Savior 's tender mercy is kindness and long-suffering his gentleness and patience towards his erring disciples all was remembered he recalled the couch and the caution Simon behold Satan desires to sift you as wheat but I have prayed for you that your faith fail not he reflected with horror upon his own ingratitude is false that his perjury once more he looked at his master and saw a sacrilegious hand raised up to smite him in the face unable longer to enjoy the scene he rushed heartbroken from the hall he pressed on his solitude and darkness he knew not and cared not where he was going at last he found himself in Gethsemane the scene of a few hours before came vividly to his mind the suffering face of his Lord stained with blood sweat and convulsed with anguish rose before him he remembers with bitter remorse that Jesus had wept and agonized in prayer alone while all those who should have united with him in that trying hour was sleeping he remembered his own solemn charge washing trade union tonight 's assented temptation he witnessed again the scene in the Justin all it was torture to his bleeding heart to know that he had added the heaviest burden to the state 's humiliation and brief on the very spot where Jesus had poured out his soul in agony to his father Peter fell upon his face and wished that he might die Peter came to Best Buy and in the full realization of his failure Peter had hit rock bottom and it says that he wished there that he might die so here we have year he had this whole that God will give him everything he ever dreamed of he had this hope that his life will be everything he ever expected it would be he had this hope that everything is in its turn out okay that he was good to be that person that he was in a be that guy and yet only a few short hours after his proclamation he hits rock bottom everything falls apart and Christ allow this crisis so that he could granted a new reality and this is where number three comes in like Peter the new reality of Christ's love allows for an epiphany that gets us on the road to healing the new reality of Christ's love allows for an epiphany that gets us on the road to healing in other words when life doesn't turn out like we thought it would likely fight with when we end up doing that thing which we said we would never do when we come to the point where we realize that we have failed miserably in this thing called the discipleship adventure when we finally hit rock bottom and realize that we are helpless Jesus allows for a new reality is a reality of his love for us Jesus was crucified and buried Peter was still in agony over his failure Peter was still wishing that he might die Peter was just sitting among with the rest of the disciples wondering what are we going to do but then in Mark chapter sixteen verse seven we have an amazing account of the resurrection of Christ Mark chapter sixteen verse seven and it says so we hear we have the resurrection of Jesus anyway happy Angel coming in saying that he is not here and the angel says in verse seven but go tell the disciples and who go tell the disciples and Peter that he is going before you into Galilee there you will see him as he said to you the Angel God told the angel to use those specific words go tell the disciples and Peter told Peter that I named him specifically because I want to reconciliation with him he thinks that God has given up on him but he is wrong he no longer believes that he is a disciple but God 's help either that Jesus is thinking about the hotel Peter that Jesus is looking for him in John chapter nineteen we have the final encounter of Jesus with Peter thanks the twenty one so here Jesus Rosen and that he appeared to the disciples he revealed himself to them and yet they were still confused they were still kind of unsure because they thought the king 's intervener the kingdom and look at chapter twenty one verse three it says the disciples were gathered together they were all just this data together and inversely it says Simon Peter said to them I am going fishing and they also said we are going with you so here we have disciples three and a half years later exactly where they started casting their nets into the sea Peterson I can do this discipleship thing I'm still trying cast my net into the sea again but Jesus comes to them we we we read the story when he revealed himself to them and Peter jumped in the water he ran and now let's go to the encounter that Jesus has with Peter verse fifteen they just finished eating breakfast and Jesus says to Peter let's go for a walk messaging system when they had eaten breakfast Jesus said to Simon Peter Simon son of Jonah do you love me now we have to look at the Greek Olympics understand this when Jesus said to Peter do you love me in the Greek Jesus said to Peter Peter do you what you think agape me and I was just a few days before Jesus had stood up and said I need here at the events that Jesus I agape you and so now after this whole ordeal after this rock-bottom experience Jesus comes to Peter says Peter do you adopt Amy and this time Peter is not so quick to I think this is Peter understand the limitations of his love for Jesus and so do Peter responds its season yes Lord you know I fully know you Solano is the Greek word for it not agape love but brotherly love it's a step down from adopting the answer Jesus said Peter dealer got any and Peter says all you know I realized something the truth about myself is that I don't apparently I want to copy you I know that I should adopt a you and I know that it's wrong that I don't copy of Jesus isolative you and he goes on Jesus sent him the second time Simon son of Jonah do you a copy and now peters beginning to get a little bit uncomfortable this is okay I get it I get it Jesus the first time you know you I know I I misrepresented I was wrong I think I got that you and I are asking a second time it feels like it China remedying a little bit so let me just set the record straight when we tell you the second time Jesus isolated the truth is that I just I don't love you the way I thought I'd and then finally Jesus says and to him the third time Simon son of Jonah do you this time Jesus doesn't use about anyway the third time Jesus says Simon son of Jonah do you fully only in other words is this all you have is this really all you have is for they are used for layout do you folio me and it says here that that Peter was grieved because the third time he said to you for Leone as appears I always even wondering if I filet O him is even questioning whether isolator have I just acknowledged that I don't agape have I just acknowledged that her alien and now he's asking if I flew and he must wonder if I insulate your as so here Peter says Jesus you know all things you know I fully know you so finally Jean Peter opens up his wounds and he says Jesus I fully know you I've finally come to grips with who I really am and Jesus says to him whacked feed my sheep verse eighteen most assuredly I say to you when you were younger you girded yourself and walk to where you wanted but when you are old you will stretch out your hands and another will gird you and carry you where you do not wish that she spoke by what in this he spoke I wish that he would glorify God and when he has spoken this he said to him what follow and so Jesus came and said you know it yet you are you have this delusion about who you work you thought you could do it on your own you thought you had it all together but I allowed a crisis of truth to show you the reality of who you really are and guess what I accept you the way you are I just want you to be honest with yourself about the fact that you cannot help yourself and guess what I understand your limitations Peter I understand your failures Peter and you know what I still want you to be my disciple even though I understand that you now have hit rock bottom I still want to use you for my glory the beauty of the gospel is this the beauty of redemption is this is that Jesus wants to in the worst failure of your life and use it for his glory the beauty of the gospel if this is that Jesus can take your biggest mistake Jesus can take your deepest loans and use it for his glory one of the greatest examples of this is in Jesus Christ what was the worst thing that could have ever happened to planner what is the worst thing that could've ever happened to planner the entrance of sin the entrance of sin is the worst thing that could have ever happened the planet is because of that one sin we have the world that we live in today six thousand years later wars and rumors of wars people dying and suffering and yet what does Jesus do he takes the greatest mistake ever he takes the worst thing that could ever happen to the world and who does he sent he sends Jesus and who is Jesus Jesus is the best thing that could have ever happened to the world that desire of ages chapter one says because God sent Jesus we as human beings can become closer to God then as if we had never sent in other words the worst thing that ever happened was sent and because of that Jesus came to this area became a human being tied himself to us for eternity and we have the potential to become more closely connected to God then as if we had never seen that my friends is redemption that Jesus will take the deepest wounds your deepest failure you six thing is he will change that thing into the greatest gift that you could ever offer the world have you ever hit rock bottom have you ever hit rock just know that you are not alone like Peter we've begun with the misconceptions about ourselves like Peter Jesus has allowed this rock-bottom experience so that we can understand our limitations but like Peter Jesus still loves us like Peter Jesus still wants to use us like Peter Jesus wants to reveal his character in an light Peter Jesus wants to take that rock-bottom experience of yours and use it for his glory he wants to take the rock-bottom experience of yours and use it to help other people out of their rock-bottom experience in the end Jesus said feed my sheep follow me your rock-bottom experience is almost over the darkest moment of your night is the moment just before nine there is a rooster crowing there is sunshine after the documents led astray precious father in heaven Lord we today want to acknowledge the fact that we are broken Laodicean and we don't even realize the state of our hearts and yet Jesus I want to thank you that you know our hearts you know our hopes you know our expectations you know our fears you know our missed consent him Jesus I want to thank you that you have still call with your friends I want to thank you Jesus that you are still willing to work with us and use us for your glory I want to pray father that he will take whatever rock bottom experience we have had and he will use that very thing to bring you glory I pray father that we will open our hearts to the truth about your love and that we each may experience an epiphany a realization that there is redemption after failure that there is hope after darkness and that there is sunshine after the night we pray these things in the name of your precious son Jesus and the media was produced by audio birds will review Ministry human rights generation of recurrence would like to listen to more great music and present or if you would like to learn more about emergency when the government NYC web or emulsifying treatment you are you'll first board and it videos .com

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