"I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will
build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it." -
Matthew 16:18 (NASU)
The words of Jesus above spoken to Peter conveyed many meanings.
They were not only an utterance of prophecy. They were meant also
to build up and to give Peter a life of significance. Peter was a
man given to impulse, a characteristic that belied an obvious
need to be esteemed.
There are many like Peter, people who desire a life of
significance. Yet, in this world of increasing materialism,
instant gratification and compromised morals, finding
significance is more like a search for the Holy Grail.
Still, living a life of significance is possible. It begins with
four thoughts we can find in the verse quoted above.
1. KNOW YOU ARE SPECIAL ("...You are Peter"). Jesus wasn't merely
reminding Peter of his name. He was, in effect, saying, "You are
somebody. In fact, you're no longer Simon the fisherman, but
Peter the rock!"
God doesn't create junk. He created you with a perfect and
eternal plan in mind that, when fulfilled, will reveal the
profound love God has for all mankind. He's given you skills,
talents and gifts so you can do your part in that divine plan.
2. KNOW YOUR PURPOSE ("...upon this rock I will build My
church"). God's divine plan is fulfilled when we realize that we
are in this world for a purpose. Certainly that purpose isn't
confined in building our own home, owning the latest car model or
wearing the most expensive jewelry.
Our purpose would definitely have something to do with other
people. Thus, we must find our purpose in serving others or
meeting their needs. A purpose that seeks to benefit others is
not only noble, it is divine.
3. KNOW YOUR WEAKNESSES ("...and the gates of Hades will not
overpower it"). What defeats divine purpose is our weaknesses,
because weaknesses tend to feed the self and cause problems (e.g.
Peter's denial of Jesus).
Yet, when we admit our weaknesses and seek to correct them, we
consequently mature and become more of a blessing to those we
serve or relate with. In turn, we also help others mature. We
must not go through life with a defeatist but a victoriuos
attitude. This means we must first conquer our weaknesses.
4. KNOW WHO GOD IS ("I also say to you..."). It was Jesus who was
addressing Peter, therefore he was trustworthy and believable.
But, more than this, he was the Son of God!
And this is the crux of the matter: It is within a relationship
with God that we can find significance in our lives. It's not
about religion; it's not about doctrines and dogma; it's not
about church and denomination.
It's about relationship. In our mundane world, we need to be able
to touch the divine. To do so is to begin to live a life of