Recovering from Failure

Posted 2/28/2009

Failure Mat 26:31-35; 69-75

Peter thought he'd be able to stick with it. He was wrong.
However, he was arguing that he would not do what Jesus was saying he would do:
First, don't overestimate your ability to prevail. Think of yourself accurately Rom 12:3, i.e. humbly, and save yourself and all around you a lot of grief (and putting up with your arrogance).
Second, don't argue with God. He knows way better, even when it doesn't look good for you. What He says will happen, no matter what.
 So, turns out Jesus was right. Bummer.
Peter "boldly" followed Jesus and His captors to Caiphas' place, and then melts before the questioning of two girls. Some tough guy! He feigns ignorance, and then progresses to cursing and swearing to prove his point that he has nothing to do with Jesus.
The rooster crowed, Peter remembered, and he left and wept bitterly. Why? Jesus had been right! This should be an amazing, wonderful, fulfillment of prophecy! Nope. Peter knew he was better than that, and could beat the odds.
Recovery John 21:1-19
Jesus didn't give up on Peter.
After His resurrection, Jesus finds some of the disciples back to fishing. They don't recognize Him until he performs another miracle by filling their fishing net full of fish.
When Peter realizes it's Jesus, he jumps overboard. Why?
We aren't told why he jumped in, but he did put all his clothes back on before doing so, and did make it to shore OK to help the others pull the fish to land.
Jesus makes a point of asking Peter three times of his love for Him. Peter this time answers affirmatively, but still gets bothered. Either the fact that Jesus was asking him three times reminded him of the other night of denials, or the words Jesus was using. The first two times Jesus asked, he used the word for "unconditional love." However, the third time, when Peter was grieved, Jesus used the word for "love like a friend" instead. Peter used the word for "love like a friend all three times."
The results prove the point
In any case, whatever the meaning, Peter never looked back. He spent the rest of his life following Jesus, up to the death that Jesus told him would happen. This time he didn't argue, but couldn't resist trying to know more Jo 21:20. Ahh, how like Peter we all are . . .
Get forgiven, get busy
Peter obviously repented of his pride, and God used him a lot in the early church, and even to write some of the Bible. He didn't spend the rest of his days stuck in sorrow over his mistakes, and grew up, and changed into a man God could use.


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