In April of 2003, our family headed toward Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas, to witness and support my younger brother’s graduation from basic training. It seemed like yesterday he and I were hugging and saying our goodbyes. Initially, this tore me up because this was a tumultuous time in our country. The wounds from 911 were still fresh. It was during this time my brother sensed his call to join the military.
Shortly after enlisting, he was sent to basic training as it’s a mandatory requirement of all recruits. For the next eight and a half weeks, the Air Force broke down and built up this twenty-year-old kid from Miami into a newly minted airman. I remember they granted us access to see him before the graduation ceremony. What stood before me was no longer my kid brother. He was now a man on a mission. Airman Basic Peña now stood tall and ready to face the future.
After graduation, The Air Force relocated him to Oklahoma, where he continued his training. As the years passed, he gained more experience, education, and training in his specialty. He served our country with great honor and distinction, and before his honorable discharge, he achieved the rank of E-5 Staff Sergeant.
His story reminds me of how God also changes or assigns people a new name or title before sending them off on a mission to do something great. Before his crucifixion, Jesus tells Simon Bar-Jonah he will now be Peter, the rock. Jesus changes his name to distinguish between the old and the new and for him to live up to the name. What a powerful reminder for us all of what Christ does for us when we accept Him as savior. We get the honor and privilege of being called the Sons of God.
Answer and Journal the Following
Read and meditate on John 1:42.
Pray and ask God to give you deep insight and understanding of this verse.
Meditate / Memorize:
Continue to meditate on the verse throughout the day and answer to the following question: What does it mean for you to be a son of God?
Share what you’ve learned with someone else.