Have you ever had one of those days where nothing seems to go right? You oversleep and are running behind first thing in the morning. On your way to work in the morning, you catch every single red light on your commute. You get a cup of coffee, and they get your order wrong. You get to work, and your boss asks to have a meeting to talk about your performance. You get a call from your spouse, you forgot to get the butter. You get ready to go home for the night and you have a flat tire. We’ve all had days like this. There’s an adage called Murphy’s Law that says anything that can go wrong, will go wrong. The truth is many of us go through life believing this. We think that it’s just who we are. “Not everybody can be as lucky as him,” is the lie we tell ourselves. If you’re feeling that way today, you’re not alone.
As we look at Matthew 16, we see that Peter was having one of those days. At first glance, he has one of the mountain top moments with Jesus. Jesus asked His disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” They explained to Jesus that other people said he was John the Baptist, Elijah, Jeremiah, or one of the other prophets. Then Jesus turned the question to a personal level when He asked the disciples, “But who do you say I am?” Peter responds saying that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of the living God.
Peter got it right! He makes the bold declaration that Jesus was the Messiah! Even when others had tried to say that Jesus was just a prophet, Peter knew the truth! That Jesus was who He said He was. Jesus says, “You are blessed…I say that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church…And I will give you the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven.” Talk about a proud moment with God. Peter was having one of those days where everything was going right. Until it started to go really wrong.
You skip down a few verses, and while Jesus was explaining His coming death and resurrection, Peter says, “No Lord, this will never happen to You.” And Jesus responds with some powerful words when He says, “Get away from me, Satan! You are a dangerous trap to Me. You are seeing things merely from a human point of view, not from God’s.” Other versions say, get behind me Satan, for you are a hindrance to me.
Jesus goes from praising Peter and telling him that his profession of faith is the foundation of the church to calling him Satan and telling him to get away. But notice what Jesus concludes this reprimand with – you are seeing things merely from a human point of view, not from God’s.
So often we read this story and think, "How could Peter not get it?" Obviously, Jesus was going to the cross and would rise again. But remember the disciples were taught that the coming Messiah was going to be a political leader or ruler. That plan wouldn’t be true if Jesus had to go to the cross.
We like to make fun of Peter for missing the moment, but how often do we live this same way? We look at life through our sad lens of nothing goes right for me and believe it! The truth is, when we don’t look at life through God’s perspective, then we are actually a trap to the people around us. When we go through life believing "everything that can go wrong will go wrong", it impacts the people around us. They begin to believe it for themselves.
Maybe you’re having one of the days today. I want to encourage you to set your mind on the things of God. Paul says this in Philippians 4:8, “Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.”
If what you’re thinking or believing about your life today doesn’t fit into one of those categories, then you need to surrender that thought and pray God would give you clarity. When you keep God’s perspective, those days where everything seems to go wrong won’t be so burdensome, because you know that God is walking with you through it.