“Simon Peter answered, ‘You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.’ And Jesus answered him, ‘Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father in heaven.'” (Excerpt from Matthew 16:13-20)
When your computer begins to run a bit slow and you get a pop-up window notifying you of an upgrade and asking if you want to download it now, do you think to yourself, “I don’t have time today. I’ll do it later”? You put it off . . . and off . . . and off. Eventually your application grinds to a near halt. You now have no choice but to download the upgrade.
If software engineers can design upgrades to meet ever-increasing challenges and systems to receive them, how much more likely is it that God designed us to be able to download God’s upgrades so we can handle the newest challenges in the world?
In this biblical text, Peter makes the proclamation that Jesus is the Christ, the son of the Living God. Jesus responds, saying, “You got the upgrade.”
Peter’s upgrade resulted in an anointed proclamation that will withstand his upcoming denial, post-crucifixion depression, resurrection jitters, and a return to an old fishing career–and re-emerge with power at just the right time: Pentecost.
Ultimately, Peter will be the one to publicly proclaim the mystery of Jesus as resurrected Christ. More than 3,000 souls will be added to a strange new Jesus movement that will turn the world upside down and be called, “the church.”
Gracious God, I can feel my spirit grinding to a halt. I cannot handle the challenges before me today. Teach me to pray, interpret your Word in ways that have meaning for this time, place, and situation. I need the upgrade. Amen.
(Reflection by Ron Buford from UCC’s StillSpeaking)