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Your Invitation this Lent

As we step into the season of Lent, maybe you’re feeling a sense of somberness. 

That’s understandable considering Lent walks us through Jesus’ journey to the cross. It also walks us to a confrontation with our own sin.

On this episode of “Becoming Whole”, listen in as Josh juxtaposes Simon’s first meeting with Jesus and his last.  There’s an invitation within this season and the two stories of Simon Peter to understand who we are and who God is.

Maybe your unwanted sexual habit or past trauma drops you to your knees making you want to push the Lord away. 

We pray you’ll allow this Lent to be a season where you spend time acknowledging your sinful nature while making time with your savior Jesus.

Let’s jump in.

Highlights:

In Luke 5:7 “Simon said, ‘Depart from me because I am a sinful man.’”

This Lent we are invited to a space of facing two realities: First, that Jesus is God in the flesh. And that Jesus came to earth and suffered for us on the cross. Second, we face the reality of our depravity.

Give us hearts that would jump out of the boat and scramble to you Lord. Amen.


If you want to learn more, check out Josh’s latest musing on this topic at, Could You Be Avoiding God?

Click for Full Podcast Transcription

Hey, everybody, I got a podcast message today I think is going to be helpful for especially for those of you who are carrying shame, who are experiencing shame somewhere in your body, your heart, your mind. Maybe you just feeling guilty. And it’s been hard to shake. And what I’m gonna share about is something I’ve been musing on and but kind of entertaining it myself, I don’t, I don’t, in any way suggest that I’ve kind of plumb the depths of what I’m going to share, but it’s been on my mind. And so I’ll share with you and continue to kind of consider and meditate on on myself and it applies to lent to, then I’ll come back to that. We are now in the season of Lent. 2022. And one of my favorite seasons in the church calendar, when my favorite seasons of the year is Lent, and we’ll talk about that over the next few weeks. Especially how it relates to sexual wholeness, and sexual integrity. Because all things that we wrestle with all things that we struggle with, whether it’s sexual in nature, or food, or drink, or envy or slander, or whatever, really the solution, the answer the, what we’re after, is found in Christ. And Lent is all about Jesus. So. So here’s what I’ve been musing on. In, in Luke five, we read this the account of Jesus coming to the he’s preaching at the Sea of Galilee. And there’s Peter and, and, and a couple of his friends, and they’ve just been fishing all night and caught anything. And Jesus turns to Simon, so they’re two boats there. And Jesus climbs in Simon’s boat, and asks him to put off a little way from shore so we can continue to teach the crowds who are pressing in on him. So GS, or Peter does that. And then after a while, Jesus says to Peter, let’s go out and fish. So let’s get out onto the water, you know, deep water, I want you to let down your nets for a fish or let down your nets for a catch a fish. And you know what happens from there? Peter says, Hey, we’ve been fishing all night, we haven’t caught anything, but because you say, so we’ll go, we’ll do it. And they do. And they have this incredibly huge catch of fish, so much so that their boat is beginning to sink, they call their friends, James and John over help them. And here’s where I want to pick up. When Simon falls down, Peter falls down in front of Jesus. So his boats filled with fish. So he’s just kind of fallen into the fish, I guess, you know, his, his knees, his hands in the fish, which wouldn’t have been so weird for a fisherman. And he says, Depart from me, Lord, for I’m a sinful man. What happened? Right there? Something I mean, Peter was struck with something. The the contrast between something in Jesus’s power, his demeanor, his ability, Peter had some sense that he was in the in the presence of, of majesty, of a prophet of, of the Messiah maybe. And he was flooded with some kind of fear, some kind of insecurity that Jesus was going to find out sooner or later, maybe, or that someone would come to Jesus later and say, you know, what kind of guy you got in your team here, right? I don’t I don’t know. I don’t know what it was. But Peter was struck to the quick, and I wanted to ask this question. Have you ever felt like that with the Lord or with anybody, maybe maybe there was no miraculous catch a fish, but just some sense of like, I want to push away from this person, I want to push away from God, because I am messed up. Because I’m sinful. I’d like to suggest to you that every single one of us has experienced that. It is a reflex that has kicked in for human being since Adam and Eve, it’s what they did in the garden after they send in Jesus, Jesus’s response to Peter, is this kind of mysterious. Follow me, come with me. And I’m going to make you fish for people. You’re going to catch people. Matthew, in in Mark’s gospel, say, follow me and I’ll make you fishers of men. And so same vocation, Peter, but come with me. So the question I’m asking is, did you notice that Peter, I’m sorry that Jesus specifically honed in on Peter Lucas clear to say that Jesus got into Peters boat. Jesus said to Peter, it’s called Simon. Jesus said to Simon, I want you to take this I want you to take me out fishing. And we could ask the question because James and John were there to their sounds like there may have been other people there as well. Why did Jesus hone in on Peter? And I think the answer is comes out for us in Peters response when he falls down at Jesus’s feet, and he’s like, get you shouldn’t be around me because I’m a sinner. I think that Jesus wanted Peter to know that he knew he wanted to call Peter. But before he called Peter, before he told Peter, I want you to be one of my disciples, I want you to be with me. I think you wanted Peter to know, I know, I know about you. And this was a way to get Peter to confront the reality that he, he may have thought he was something he may have thought he was the king, king of the lake, in like I know about fishing. And you know, or he may or may have may have been able to think on one level like, Hey, I’m a really good guy, like I’ve been fishing all night. But since you say, so I’ll do it. Aren’t I obedient? Aren’t I good. But man, when he was confronted with reality of who Jesus was, he was undone. This Lent, I think we are all invited to a space of facing two realities. We’re always invited to this. But Lent is a specific season where we get to confront confront these in a specific way. The reality one, that Jesus is God, that Jesus is, in fact, who we have said that we believe he is, that he is Messiah, that He is God who has come in the flesh. And we say it all the time. We’re kind of around that in Christian circles. But man, like, can we just focus on it? Can we just spend some time legitimately focusing on this idea that this man Jesus is, in fact, God in the flesh, and how unfathomable that is, and how worthy of our time and that this god man, Jesus, came to Earth and suffered for us on the cross, suffering unto death. We, you know, we’d spend these 40 days every year, if you practice land, if you participate in lead, focusing on this. But we will never be able to spend enough time with this. I mean, I can’t wrap my brain, my heart, my mind around it. And then the second reality is just our utter depravity, the fact that we are so fallen, so mixed up. No, when I first came to regeneration, I really kind of a bit I wouldn’t have articulated quite this way. But I kind of felt like, my sexual sin was the really bad stuff, the rest of my life was pretty much together. I had some issues, but you know, those were minor compared to the sexual sin. And the stuff that I see in my heart today, we went through a confession on Ash Wednesday. And the confession, it was a part of liturgical service, and it went through each of the 10 commandments. And if each one I felt like oh, I’m guilty, oh, Lord, I’m guilty, oh, Lord, I’m guilty. There’s just so much crap in me, in Lent is a time to face the face that face the reality of our own sinfulness of our own rebellion against God, our own hatred and injustice towards other people, our own pride, and setting ourselves up over God and others, our own lusts. And we’ve used other people’s bodies, and their images to try to satisfy some sexual desire in us, and so much more. And so facing these things side by side, the the deity of Jesus and His suffering, for our sake, alongside of our own sinfulness. But I don’t want to stop there, because Luke doesn’t pick this up. But John does. And so we’re I know, we’re jumping between two gospel stories in two different authors of different intents. But I think it’s, I think it’s appropriate because I think John, probably assume that many of us here had already heard the story, many of his readers had already heard the story of Peters. call to discipleship. But at the end of the end of John’s gospel, after Jesus has been raised from the dead after His crucifixion, Peter, you know, Jesus is kind of in and out, they’ve seen him, they, you know, there’s a news that he’s around, and Peter says to his buddies, hey, look, I’m gonna go fishing. And so they all kind of go back to their old thing, what’s familiar to them? And while they’re out fishing, they’re not catching anything. And there’s some guy on the shore that hollers out, Hey, throw your nets on the other side, which is kind of ludicrous because the boats aren’t that big, like, they’re not catching fish and one side, throw on the other side doesn’t seem to make much difference. Maybe I don’t understand how fishing work back then. But it doesn’t seem like it’d be that big a deal. Any case they do it. And again, they’re they’re just flooded with this huge catch a fish. This time their their net does not break. But immediately Peters taken back. And he you almost get this picture in the scene of they’re pulling up the fish, they’re trying to pull the fish just so many weighing their boats down. And then Peter looks up and he’s like it’s the Lord. He just knew it’s the Lord. And watch what Peters reaction is, then how different it is, than his first interaction with Jesus in the boat. First interaction is Depart from me, because I am so full of sin. The second interaction, and remember the second interaction, this is after G Peter betrayed Jesus in front of him three times before Jesus was crucified, told even a young girl I don’t have any idea who he is and was cursing, to try to convince people I don’t know this Jesus. He betrayed his best friend, his savior, his master who promised he never He never leave. And he’d fight to the death for and Jesus knew it. And Peter knew it. And when this big catch of fish comes in, and Peter is struck with the reality that it’s the Lord John rights that Peter pulled off his clothes and jumped in the water and swam to shore, which was crazy. It wasn’t faster than the boats, the boats got there pretty much same time that Peter did, John says. So it wasn’t like a it wasn’t a calculated move. It was a move of the heart. So the question is, what happened in those years that Peter walked with Jesus, those two or three years that Peter walked with Jesus? What did he experience with him? That his knee jerk response was so different, that his impulse was so different, even knowing still how guilty he was? That instead of just falling down and pushing Jesus away or trying to get away, he jumps in the water and scrambles to get us to get to Jesus fast as he can. I think there was something that he experienced in Jesus mercy, compassion in his face, in the way that Jesus would look at Peter, the things that Peter felt inside in his experiences with Jesus, that even in his in his moment of just utter guilt, no way to explain it, no way to deny it. He wanted to get to Jesus. Like instead of like, you got to get away from me. Because I’m, I’m going to be unknown if you stay with me. In the end of John, he was I need to get to Jesus, I need to get to Jesus, even if it undoes me. I think the invitation to look at those two realities, the reality of Jesus’s godhood and His sacrifice for us up next to our own depravity is not, it’s not to beat ourselves up. During these 40 days, it’s not to push our faces into the dirt in some self abasing way. It is to humble ourselves. But the reason is not because God demands it of us and wants us to be humiliated. The reason we do it is because we we need to acknowledge our sin, in order to invite Jesus to that place we want that moment. We want that moment that Peter had in the boat, where our guilt just pours out of us. And we we come face to face Jesus, I gotta tell you something, I am guilty. And yet we do so recognizing that there’s something in the face of Jesus something in his heart in his, in his his expression over us, His posture to us, his proximity to us that it’s actually good. And we can rushed him whenever our sin is exposed. So if you’re wrestling with shame, sexual shame, things done to you things you’ve done. you’re wrestling with guilt over things you’ve done in the past or things that you did today. This is a great time of year to jump in the water and get as close to Jesus as you can acknowledge your guilt, and acknowledge who he is, and behold Him. Jesus, I pray for every brother and sister listening who has that impulse, like I find in myself, Lord, to pull away from you in the areas where we feel ashamed and guilty. Or help us learn this Lent. Not just intellectually, but experientially, like Peter somehow learned that where we most need and want to be in the when we behold the truth about who We are and who you are where we really want to be where you most need and want to be as with you give us hearts Lord that would jump out of the boat and scrambled to you as fast as we can we ask us the name of the Father Son Holy Spirit Amen

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