Carey Lewis Devotions
Thursday, March 31st, 2011
Blessed Are The Industrious
Peter said to Jesus, 'Lord, it is good for us to be here; if You wish, I will make three tabernacles here, one for You, and one for Moses, and one for Elijah.'
Matthew 17:4 (NAS)
Peter was the most industrious of the twelve disciples. He continually formed plans and ideas, unafraid to speak up or step out in faith. In fact, he was the disciple who literally stepped out of a boat twice. The first time, he walked on water: 'And Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus' (Matthew14:29). The second time, Peter jumped out of the boat, rushing toward the risen Jesus Who stood on shore.

Some of Peter's words and ideas ended in failure and rebuke. 'Get behind Me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to Me' (Matthew16:23). We cannot forget Peter's boastful words on the night of Jesus' arrest, 'Even though all may fall away because of You, I will never fall away' (Matthew 26:33). He soon denied Jesus three times as his big words turned to big fear.

Yet, we see time and time again that God forgives our enthusiastic blunders. He even perfects them, as a smiling father might finish the passionate, but failing efforts of a child with the right heart but the wrong plan. 'The word of God... performs its work in you who believe' (1 Thessalonians 2:13), and 'He who began a good work in you will perfect it' (Philippians 1:6).

Peter--the stepper-outer and speaker-upper who made mistakes and denied Christ--became the leader of all Christ followers, including you and me. 'You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church' (Matthew 16:18).

In this spirit, I say 'blessed are the industrious' with a heart for God: those who have ideas, make plans, and step out in faith to do them. Even if their first attempts seem disastrous, God will turn their failures into wonders. While others sit and watch on the sideline, the industrious run heart-first into the game, and God Himself will bless their efforts.

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"I labored, yet not I. By the grace of God, I am what I am, and do what I do' (paraphrase of 1 Corinthians 15:10). I love God's Word. As a late-in-life committed Christian with no Bible training prior to age 51, some people wonder how I'm qualified to write devotions. I wonder that, too. But God loves children and fools for Him. I am both. Ghost Writer? God.

Carey Lewis

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