How much “denying yourself” do you see?
Jesus calls those who follow Him to deny themselves, take up their cross (die to self), and follow Him. This will include suffering for others; this will include obeying Jesus when it doesn’t make sense or when the feelings aren’t there; this will include being different than the world around us that says, “Do what makes YOU happy.”
Peter has understood who Jesus is – it was revealed by the Father – Jesus is the Messiah, the Christ, the Son of God. He is the Deliverer. Peter has also totally misunderstood the mission of Jesus – that He came to bring the Kingdom, and to die and rise again – to forgive our sins so that the Holy Spirit can live in us and transform us. We have to deny ourselves – knowledge alone doesn’t cut it. Peter knew who Jesus was, and was still called Satan! We have to make the choice to follow Jesus, to deny our own will, and be willing to give our lives for Him.
When we do this, there is actually incredible peace and joy. We are free from selfishness. We see glimpses of people denying themselves – giving someone else the right of way on the road, a teacher or leader who gives extra encouragement, an act of generosity. God is working on us so that those glimpses become our nature. I know I have a long way to go.