Simon Peter asked, “Lord, where are you going?”
And Jesus replied, “You can’t go with me now, but you will follow me later.”
“But why can’t I come now, Lord?” he asked. “I’m ready to die for you.”
Jesus answered, “Die for me? I tell you the truth, Peter—before the rooster crows tomorrow morning, you will deny three times that you even know me. (John 13:36-38)
Relate: I live about two thirds of the way up a hill. Over the summer I have been sleeping with my window and the door to my balcony open. That balcony looks out over the valley below me and to the hill rising up on the far side. The acoustics in this valley are amazing and a few times a day I can hear the ezan from eight to ten different mosques as the various müezzins sing it out. It is ethereal.
Another thing I can hear crying out from up and down the mountain is all the roosters. That is not nearly as melodic or beautiful. I will say, however, that it is far more effective. I don’t even bother setting an alarm anymore. I know for a fact that pretty much every single morning, between 30-45 minutes before the sun rises, I will be awake. Most mornings, I am halfway tempted to start walking up and down my streets wringing a few skinny feathered necks so that I might have myself a good old fashioned rooster noodle soup. Or perhaps rooster cordon bleu. Maybe rooster cacciatore. The dish isn’t what is important. The killing… that’s all I care about. No matter what form my morning alarm clock has taken, I have never been a fan. Just because it is now a conspiracy of roosters does not make it any better than the cell phone tune, radio, or electronic beep I have experienced in the past.
React: Jesus used a rooster to send Peter a wake up call far more important than my need to pry my eyes open every morning. Before it ever played itself out, before the crowds, the alarm first rang out in that upper room. I wonder what would have happened if Peter had not pushed snooze that first time around. There are plenty of examples in scripture of people who have repented when given warning by God and as a result the warning was repealed. Hezekiah had years added to his life. Josiah had the judgment of Judah delayed for his generation. Jonah warned the city of Nineveh and they repented. Even evil Ahab repented when Elijah warned him of impending judgment. Could Peter have been spared from his humiliation at the hands of a hen?
How sensitive am I to the wake up calls of the Spirit? There are mornings when I hear those roosters, roll over, and sleep on. I have even once or twice pulled myself out of bed only to shut the door, shut the windows, and shut out the noise. Am I as insensitive to spiritual wake up calls as I am to physical ones? The one advantage of roosters as an alarm is that you can’t really push snooze on the monsters. They just keep on crowing and crowing and… What are some ways am I spiritually pushing that snooze button? God, wake us up. We need to hear from You.
God, for those times I have ignored Your warnings, I am so sorry. For those times I have simply refused to hear You calling, I am sorry. For those times I have slept through Your calling on my life, I am so sorry. Give me a softer heart. Give me a more responsive spirit. Give me a more sensitive spirit to both the things You are calling me towards and what You are warning me against. Let me never push snooze on Your alarms.