“No! Even if I have to die with you, I will never deny you!” (Matt 26:35) Peter’s conviction was pretty strong! While under Rome’s relatively stable political environment, Peter, with his brother, Andrew, successfully provided for the family with their fishing business in Galilee. Maybe, this explains why Peter comes across as someone hopeful, optimistic and confident. Yet later, when accused of being one of Jesus’ disciples, it only took Peter a few hours to do an “about-face” when he vehemently denied saying, “No, I am not” (John 18:25).
Similarly, we, who live in North America, pride ourselves as resilient people - hopeful, optimistic and confident in our abilities. Why soon we will even be able to travel to space for pleasure! We are developing driverless cars utilizing Artificial Intelligence, advancing technologically and scientifically in many frontiers, making our lives more secure, comfortable, and even longer. In early 2020, the Conference Board of Canada confidently forecasted our GDP to expand by 1.8%. Surely all these should provide for our peace of mind.
Suddenly, when COVID-19 landed on our shores, our confidence was dashed. Our peace, safety and security dissolved; our lives threatened; our jobs and incomes disappeared, and our wealth and assets crumbled. In a matter of two months, our CBOC revised its forecast. We are now facing a contraction economically.
The truth is, the ground for our confidence in this world is rather fragile. Seriously, can we truly find peace, safety and security anywhere? Thankfully, the answer can be found in our passage today, Psalm 68:15-20. This psalm celebrates the final stages of the Israelites’ journey that began at Mount Sinai and ended at Mount Zion. It ultimately points to the victory of Jesus over evil in his establishment of the Church, God’s Holy Nation. (Ephesians 4:8)
Today, May 29, is the International Day of United Nations (UN) Peacekeepers. It honours and pays tribute to all the peacekeepers that have lost their lives serving under the UN flag. Since 1945, the whole objective of the UN is to maintain international peace and security. Yet, despite its efforts, world peace remains rather elusive. However, the name “The United Nations” does remind us of a far better nation - God’s Holy Nation! As people of this nation, we can have true hope, optimism and confidence because God is our everlasting peace, safety and security.
Discipleship Pastor at Foothills who loves telling people about Jesus