Earlier this summer, as I was standing outside St. Peter’s Church in Rome, I couldn’t help but think about Peter’s humble beginnings as a fisherman originally named Shimon (Simon), born and raised in a small village by the Sea of Galilee.
His life was turned upside down when Peter met Jesus, who sent him and other apostles to win over and change entire nations.
Peter ended up coming to Rome, the capital of the Roman Empire, and gave his life for his faith in Yeshua!
When I think about Peter’s origins, coming from a tiny village in Galilee, not too far from where we live in Israel, all the way to stand before the biggest empire in the world in those days, it’s a powerful reminder that God can take anyone from any place, and use for His glory to change the nations.
While I was visiting Rome, I had amazing moments of reflection and deep introspection, thinking about history’s full circles. It can be conflicting also at times to stand before a massive cathedral such as St. Peter’s in Rome, because history isn’t always pretty, and often it is difficult to face and explore. But I wanted to put all the mixed feelings to the side and just focus on the important part: Peter as a follower of Yeshua, who loved his Savior until his last breath! So much so, that he gave his life for Jesus, despite his earlier mistakes.
What a tremendous journey! From a small Galilean village to standing before a mighty Roman Empire, Peter set an example of devotion that millions and millions of believers have followed and died for Yeshua. Even today people are still giving their lives for their faith in Christ.
Standing in Rome I was just flooded with gratitude that God is using people to this day to spread His kingdom on earth, to change regimes and empire, just like He did with the Roman Empire.