So Peter turned around and saw the disciple Jesus loved following them, the one who had leaned back against Jesus at the supper and asked, “Lord, who is the one that’s going to betray you?” When Peter saw him, he said to Jesus, “Lord, what about him?”
“If I want him to remain until I come,” Jesus answered, “what is that to you? As for you, follow me.”
So this rumor spread to the brothers and sisters that this disciple would not die. Yet Jesus did not tell him that he would not die, but, “If I want him to remain until I come, what is that to you?”
Peter wanted to know what Jesus had planned for the other disciple, but Jesus almost rebuked him for it. Do you look at another believer’s life and wish that you could trade? Remember how Jesus corrected Peter. No matter how things look from the outside, you do not know what it is like to walk someone else’s path with Jesus. You do not know what hardships they face on their yacht. You do not know the difficulties they face living with that otherwise attractive spouse. You do not know what cancer diagnoses await their loved ones. Focus instead on what God has called you to do. You will not be judged on how well you could have done in someone else’s circumstances.
It is beautiful and challenging that Jesus would reiterate to Peter the same words He used when calling Peter to be a disciple in the first place. “Follow me,” the Savior said once more in verse 22. Though others prosper, follow Him. Though you suffer more than anyone else, follow Him. Though He slay you, hope in Him. Though the world burns, follow Jesus just like you did in your very first days as a newly called disciple. Follow Him.
Describe a time in your past when things looked great on the outside, but were actually incredibly difficult on the inside. Who might have naively wanted to trade with you?
Pray: Grit your teeth, clench your fists, and express to God your resolve to live out whatever He has called you to face regardless of how easy other believers’ walks appear to be.