So, you’re single and you meet someone. You exchange phone numbers and begin to talk. You have long, indebt conversations on the phone. Day in and day out the two of you talk for hours on end. Both of you have very similar interests, goals, and dreams. Trying not to get too excited, you curb your enthusiasm, but in the back of your mind you ask the question, “Could this be the one?” Then, one day the time finally comes, your first date.

After several phone conversations, you discover that the two of you enjoy walks in the park. So, you agree to meet at your favorite park, and the date takes place there.

When you see each other in the park, you greet one another with a brief and slightly awkward hug. It is decided that a walk down the path past the stream would be the most scenic.

As you walk the conversation continues that you had over the phone the night before. It is apparent that both of you really like each other. As you continue to walk, both of you catch a glimpse of the sun rays beaming down off the water. At that moment, all seems right in the world.

As you approach the stream, you get so close to your date that you accidentally brush their hand. Quickly pulling away you apologize, but you know that the apology wasn’t sincere. That becomes more evident when you reach the water. The scenery is so perfect that when your hands touch a second time, neither of you lets go. What a perfect first date.

The romantic walk continues pass the stream and curves past a line of groomed trees. Since it is a cool fall day, the traffic inside the park has been practically non-existence. However, you notice that down the path about 40 yards away, a couple of people are walking in your direction.

Your date isn’t aware of them, because there in the middle of a story they are eager to tell you. Suddenly, in mid-sentence, your date stops the story and releases their grip on your hand. As the couple walks toward you, your date quickly hides behind one of the trees off the path. As you stand on the path minus your date, you exchange a brief hello with the passing couple.

As soon as the couple is out of sight, your date reappears from behind the tree. Without any explanation, they continue their story as if nothing happened. Of course, you realize that was odd, however, you want to look past that strange experience.

Next, the plan is to see a movie. So, you leave the park and head to the movie theatre. Being early for the movie you stop at the concession stand and grab a bag of popcorn and some drinks.

Since you are the first in the theatre, your date insists that you sit in the very last row. Although you prefer sitting in the middle, you comply with their request.

As the two of you sit in the back row waiting for the house lights to dim, you notice that every time someone enters the theatre, your date hides their face behind the bag of popcorn.  This continues for every person that enters the theatre until the house lights dim and the movie starts.

Now, what you thought was the perfect date is not so perfect anymore.

By this time, you want to head for home, but you decide to give it one more try. The next stop is dinner, and your date chooses a small inmate restaurant.

When you enter the restaurant, your date requests a table in a secluded corner in the back. So, you are seated and conversation resumes.

This time, you are critiquing the movie. However, when the waitress comes over to take your order, your date holds the menu over their face. And after ordering, your date pretends to drop something on the floor as they hand the menu back to the waitress, hiding their face in the process.

By this time, it is obvious that your date does not want to be seen with you.

How would that make you feel?

That was just a first date.

What if that was your spouse, and after promising before GOD and the world that you would love, honor, and cherish one another until death you do part; that your spouse was ashamed to be seen with?

How would that make you feel?

Not very good, right?                                                             

That’s an understatement.

Your spouse is the one that is supposed to be with you through thick and thin. If the world is against you, your spouse is the one who should stand by you, and not be ashamed to be seen with you.

No matter how bad those two examples were, I have another example that’s worst.

Let’s look at Peter.

Peter was one of the disciples of Jesus. For approximately three years, Peter was almost always with Jesus. He was there when Jesus ate, drank, taught, and ministered. Peter not only saw Jesus perform miracles of healing the sick and casting out devils, but Jesus sent him out to do the same while he was still on the earth.

In fact, Peter was in Jesus’s inner circle. When Jesus raised Jairus’s daughter from the dead, he only took Peter, James, and John with him. (Mark 5:21-43 KJV). When Jesus went up to the mountain called “Transfiguration”, and his appearance changed; Jesus only took Peter, James, and John. (Matthew 17:1-8 KJV).

When people ask the question, “Who walked on water?” People answer Jesus, but they forget that Peter also walked on water before he began to sink. (John 6:16-21 KJV). And don’t forget, it was Peter who told Jesus that he would die for him. Out of all the disciples in the garden of Gethsemane, there was only one, Peter who drew his sword to defend Jesus (John 18:10-11 KJV).

Although Peter was one of Jesus’s close and faithful disciples, he denied Jesus three times in one night.

After Jesus was captured by the Jewish leaders, Peter followed behind to see what would happen. Unfortunately, when asked if he knew Jesus, Peter said that he didn’t three times. After denying him for the third time, the cock crowed, and Jesus looked at Peter. Peter, remembering that Jesus told him that he would betray him, went out and cried bitterly. (Luke 22:61-62 KJV).

Denying Jesus affected Peter greatly. That’s why after Jesus rose from the dead and appeared to the disciples, many bible scholars believe that the reason Jesus asked Peter, “Do you love me?” three times, was to make up for the three denials.

Peter finally got back on track and became a great man of GOD. When faced with the threats of being beaten, imprisoned, and death, Peter didn’t deny Jesus. In fact, he spoke even more boldly.

As Christians, where does that leave us?

The time is coming, and for some, is at hand, we will be challenged to compromise, forbid to speak, or flatly deny the name of Jesus. As I write this, there are many Christians throughout the world who are facing persecution for their faith. Like the days of old, they have been threatened, beaten, and killed for their faith. We need to pray for them.

We are all called to stand and be representatives for Jesus. We can not be ashamed if people ridicule us for our faith. In fact, we should be like Peter when the Jewish leaders threaten him not to preach in the name of Jesus. As soon as they released him, he went back out and preached the name of Jesus.

If you haven’t noticed, evil has greatly increased. Sins that use to be hidden are now out in the open. The Bible says, “When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord shall lift up a standard against him.” (Isaiah 59:19 KJV). We have to stand against the evil in this world. We can not be ashamed to use the authority of the name of Jesus to defeat evil. Remember that we are overcomers. GOD expects us to make Jesus’s enemies his footstool. (Hebrews 10:12-13 KJV).

GOD has called us to share Jesus with the people around us. We should share Jesus with our family, our friends, strangers, and co-workers. I realize that with some of those mentioned you have to be cautious. However, that’s why we need to listen to the Spirit of GOD.

Remember what Jesus said, “Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.” (Luke 12:8-12 KJV).

We’ve already discussed how we wouldn’t like our significant other, or our spouse to be ashamed to be seen with us. Even though that is bad, it’s only temporary. However, we do not want Jesus to deny us before his Father. That’s eternal.

So, let’s pray for boldness that we may speak the word of GOD to win souls for Jesus. And be not ashamed of the one who wasn’t ashamed to die for us that we could have eternal life.

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