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by Mary Kate Hipp
Today we read Peter making a bold claim: that he will lay down his life for Jesus.
We can scoff at Peter, having known that he will deny Christ thrice prior to the crow of a rooster. If we were honest with ourselves, how many of us would be in a similar situation to Peter though? Sure, in our comfortable lives and subsequent quaint faiths that we live out here in the comfort of Columbus, Ohio, it is easy to say that we would lay down our lives for Christ. But ask yourself, "Am I willing to lay down my life for Jesus? Or am I just putting on a face waiting for the rooster to crow?" Would you earnestly be willing to lay down your life for the sake of Christ? Maybe this is hard to imagine, seeing as most of us probably will never be put in a situation to choose between life and Christ.
The fate of the martyrs may not be ours but their faith and conviction must be. What does this mean? Perhaps this includes dying daily to temptations and idols of this world - ego, success, money, pleasing others, lust, anything that dominates your life. Death to self gives life. In our commitment to live for Christ and die to our worldly desires we become martyrs, adopting the same fervor Peter expressed, but with the legitimacy, he initially lacked in his exclamation.
So again I ask, are you willing to lay down your life for the sake of Christ, or are you just putting on a face waiting for the rooster to crow? What in your life are you not willing to die to in order to fully follow Christ? What are you holding on to? What is worth denying Christ for? Martyrdom is a witness to the grace of the Father. Let your life be one with the faith and conviction of the martyrs. Brothers and sisters, do not wait for the rooster to crow! Follow Jesus now and lay down your life for Him today.
Spend time today in a humble posture before the Lord. Ask Him to reveal to you what in your life you have not died to. Repent for the ways in which you are waiting for the rooster to crow. Confess before the Lord what is keeping you from laying down your life for Him. Spend time surrendering those things. Thank the Father for His forgiveness and the everlasting life that He gives!