So when they had eaten breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me more than these?
We live in such an incredible time. Technology is amazing as it allows us to interface with friends from all over the world, while watching 300 different channels on our television, while purchasing gifts for our family right on our laptop, and all of this can be done at the same time! Then there are the events and activities that are at our disposal everyday. So many choices, so many things to keep ourselves occupied with, sports, entertainment, travel, etc..We live in an exciting time that if we are not careful can easily cause us to think a little less about Jesus and more about our stuff and all of the stuff we can do.
As you probably know, Peter was as sold out for Jesus as anyone. He even publicly proclaimed to Jesus that even if he had to die for Jesus, he would never disown Him. Of course, Peter ended up denying the Lord, not once, but 3 times. Its easy for us to sit in our comfortable, monday morning quarterback chair and look at Pete and think, ‘man, what were you thinking?’. In the same way we can gloss over this question of Jesus and feel that it only applies to Peter, the denier. That denying of Jesus would never happen to us, right? But this is a question for all of us. Do you love Jesus more than…? What are the these? Were they the other disciples? The fish? I think it was what Peter had gotten himself occupied with now that Jesus had gone. He went back to what he knew and loved. Fishing. Jesus gave him the blessing of catching what was probably the biggest payday in his career. Too many fish to be able to pull up. The feeling Peter must have had was probably what the Ohio State Buckeyes felt like last night as they won the national championship. (Sorry duck fans!). He was probably overjoyed, full of pride as the other fisherman looked on, and then realizing it was the Lord he made his way in to hang out with Him. He was now in the decision making place where Jesus is trying to help Peter figure out if Peter’s words are just words or are they truth. Is he willing to love Jesus more than the love he has for fishing. He is now eating with the risen savior whom he denied and he gets asked if he loves (agape)Him more than whatever could draw his attention away. He wanted Pete to feed His sheep and be an incredible force in the building of the church. This was almost like a pregame locker room speech to get Pete focused on what was important. I think its a question for all of us. Do we love Jesus more than…? We need to fill in the blank. Has our love for Jesus gotten diluted from the flow of so much stuff, technology, or opportunities in our lives? Maybe there was a time in your life when you feel like you loved Jesus more than you do right now. If so, then perhaps its time to refocus and look to how you can put the priorities back in place. Not all of us are called to be in ministry full time like Peter was, but our life, our relationships, our work, and our choices of how we fill our time can be a reflection of how much we love Jesus and how much He loves us.