Good morning! Do you recall times when you were in your youth? Do you remember being told to do something – you heard the instruction but ignored it? I was that strong-willed kid (hard-headed) at times. My mom would say something to me and I would keep doing what I wanted to do, until my mother would call me by my full name or get in front of my face – lock eyes with mine and would gracefully give me one more chance to listen and do what she said. Today, we will continue our reading in Acts chapter 10 where God is instructing Peter.
“9 The next day as Cornelius’s messengers were nearing the town, Peter went up on the flat roof to pray. It was about noon, 10 and he was hungry. But while a meal was being prepared, he fell into a trance. 11 He saw the sky open, and something like a large sheet was let down by its four corners. 12 In the sheet were all sorts of animals, reptiles, and birds. 13 Then a voice said to him, “Get up, Peter; kill and eat them.”
14 “No, Lord,” Peter declared. “I have never eaten anything that our Jewish laws have declared impure and unclean.[b]” 15 But the voice spoke again: “Do not call something unclean if God has made it clean.” 16 The same vision was repeated three times. Then the sheet was suddenly pulled up to heaven.” – Acts 10:9-16 NLT
In Peter’s prayer time, God gave him a vision and revealed that God has made what was once declared unclean (in the Jewish culture, see Leviticus chapter 11) clean.
This is at least the fourth time Peter experienced something life transforming as it relates to the number three:
- Matthew 26:34 – 34 Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, Peter—this very night, before the rooster crows, you will deny three times that you even know me.”
- The actual recording of Peter’s three (3) denials is in Matthew 26:69-75 and in the other gospels.
- John 21:15-17NLT (focusing on verse 17) – 17 A third time he asked him, “Simon son of John, do you love me?” Peter was hurt that Jesus asked the question a third time. He said, “Lord, you know everything. You know that I love you.” Jesus said, “Then feed my sheep.
- Luke 24:45-46 – 45 Then he (Jesus) opened their (the disciples) minds to understand the Scriptures. 46 And he said, “Yes, it was written long ago that the Messiah would suffer and die and rise from the dead on the third day.
I don’t believe it was a coincidence that the same vision repeated to Peter three (3) times. This was a confirmation of the new thing God was doing because of what Jesus Christ did at the cross – Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice restoring all men/women back to God.
Sisters and brothers, you may be struggling to understand what God’s plan is for you. You might be asking God to reveal things to you as clearly as He did with Peter. I want you to understand that God will meet you right where you are and if given the liberty He will direct your steps and put you on the right path. As you can see with Peter, God is a patient God who has a plan for you. It took Peter three times – how many times will it take you?
May I encourage you to begin praying to God with a fully surrendered heart ❤, ask Him to order your steps, and with an obedient heart trust and follow His plan.
Father God, we thank you for all that you have done for us. Thank you for your gracious mercy and endless grace. Lord God, forgive us for the times when you have directed our steps and we decided to go a different direction. Lord, lead us back to you. Lord, cover us and shield our minds with your mighty power and strength. Equip us to stay attuned to your voice and your direction. Lord, remove our fears and doubts, and strengthen us for the easy and difficult task ahead. Lord, we trust you on this journey and we believe that your presence will be with us. Cover us today, secure our armor to ensure everything is in place and order our steps and our speech in Jesus name, amen.
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