PICKING UP THE PIECES

Sorry, You Blew It!

Sorry, You Blew It!

“I will never!” said Peter when Jesus spoke of the apostles scattering. “Even if all others are made to stumble, I will never!” (Matthew 26:33) However, Jesus insisted that he would be among the first to deny Him. “Never!” Peter adamantly repeated. “Not on my life!” But before the night was over, Cock-a-doodle-doo, the over-confident fisherman had denied the Lord, not just once, but three times. And the moment their eyes met, the water works began. Peter lost it, crying a river of bitter tears.

It would be a tragic tale if the story ended there. Thankfully, it doesn’t.

Peter’s denial was no surprise to Jesus. He saw it coming before time began, so there wasn’t any shock or disappointment when it happened. The Lord’s greater concern was how this blunder might rock the friend he affectionately knew as “Rock.” Peter earned that special name upon confessing Jesus as the Christ. Sadly, it went to his head. Three years later, Peter the Rock crumbled under pressure. But Jesus was determined to pick up the pieces.

“I have prayed for you that your faith should not fail,” Jesus assured Peter the night of His arrest. “And when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.” (Luke 22:32) Jesus had his back from the beginning. And when Jesus met up with him after the resurrection, Peter couldn’t deny his love for the Savior. Three times he confessed it. That’s when his faith was restored to rock solid.

Though Peter was used in extraordinary ways, he was a most ordinary man, with flaws the size of Texas. That’s why we relate to him so well. We have both sin and Savior in common. We’ve all done things we were absolutely sure we would never do. “Not on my life!” we swore before the rooster crowed. Somewhere in that cock-a-doodle-doo the words “You’re finished!” were heard. That’s when the bitter tears came gushing out.

While the big, bad blunders may take us by surprise, they are no surprise to Jesus. He knew every flaw, fault and failure before any of us were ever conceived. So, there is nothing we can do to shock Him. Instead, He intercedes, praying that our faith should not fail, or that it wouldn’t be rocked when we crumble under pressure. And when it does, He’s there to pick up the pieces.

Never forget that. When you think you’re finished, remember Jesus who said, “It is finished.” Sin’s hold on you is finished! It lost its grip 2,000 years ago when Jesus held tight to the nails. Now that sin no longer has a hold on you, release it. Cling to Jesus. Embrace His forgiveness. And once you’ve been restored, others will be strengthened by your testimony.

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