One of the roadblocks in my personal journey towards professional ministry was the fear that I might one day do or say something that would end up coming between someone and God. I knew I was flawed and made mistakes - what if I hurt, disappointed or let-down someone to the point that they lost their faith? I had to work through my own fear of that responsibility and instead to trust that whatever mistakes I might make, God would, in some way, have it covered. Part of this involved the healthy humility of recognising I am not as important as I might think I am.
In today’s passage, Peter has managed the huge about face of accepting that the gift of Christ is not exclusive to the Jewish people. He opens himself up to a complete change of perspective - an epiphany which changes him, and changes the newly forming ‘church’.
We know that ‘your will be done’ is a powerful prayer
But it’s not an excuse for inaction.
You do not call us to passive acceptance of the world,
or a particular way of being church.
You call us to active engagement.
This is frightening sometimes.
So much could go wrong,
We might, no we will, make mistakes.
Even worse we will make them in your name.
Let this not paralyse us.
Instead let it encourage us to hand over our fear to you
To know that ultimately we cannot and will not hinder your mission,
as long as we remain humble and alert and open to your revelation.
17 If then God gave them the same gift that he gave us when we believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could hinder God?’