Courage to try again
Comeback stories are inspiring, aren’t they? Some remarkably successful people failed miserably before they succeeded… Walt Disney was $4 million in debt after numerous career setbacks before he turned it around with the release of Snow White in 1938. “Colonel Sanders” was nearly broke in 1955 after his restaurant in Corbin, Kentucky was bypassed by the new interstate; he decided to try to sell franchises for his famous fried chicken. Elvis’ first two recordings received no interest and an audition for a singing gig in a quartet didn’t work out; he was told he couldn't sing.
Despite their failures, many people have made the most of their “second chances.” I am so grateful that I serve a God of second chances! How ‘bout you? The bible is filled with ordinary people who faltered and fell, they failed; yet God, in His amazing grace, gave them a second chance and many made the most of it! Peter is a great example. Jesus warned Peter that Satan would be stirring in his life and that Peter would deny ever knowing Him three times before the rooster crowed. Peter vehemently defended himself, saying “I will never disown you.” (Luke 22:31-34).
But, Peter was wrong. Sadly, he did deny ever even knowing Jesus, not once, but three times, just as Jesus said he would. When Peter denied him a third time, the rooster crowed and Jesus fixed his eyes on Peter. In that moment, Peter remembered what Jesus had told him 62 And he went outside and wept bitterly. (Luke 22:54-62).
What do we learn from this pivotal marker in Peter’s life?
1) We are all prone to sin. Peter was one of Jesus’ closest friends, most faithful, committed followers, but in a moment of weakness, even he gave in to sin. He denied he ever knew Jesus, not once but three times! Are you denying Jesus in your life right now?
2) Jesus has his eyes fixed on us. Can you imagine how Peter felt when that rooster crowed and Jesus’ eyes turned to fix on him? You may think Jesus isn’t paying attention to you or that you are hiding from Him, because after all, nobody else really knows what you’re doing, right? The truth is, Jesus does.
3) Jesus’ gaze convicts us. Peter was convicted. His heart was broken when he realized what he had done. Whatever “look” was on Jesus’ face, there is no doubt that His gaze was filled with grace; Peter saw that. He was broken by it.
4) True repentance breaks our hearts and reveals who we really are! Do you think Peter wanted to deny Christ? Of course not. That’s not who he was… No doubt his flesh got the best of him in that moment.
The great news is that Christ would ultimately give Peter the courage to try again. And He can and will do the same for you! Peter made the most of his “second chance.” He went on to make a remarkable impression and leave an indelible mark for Christ's sake. Will you? For much more, listen to and share, Courage Part 8 - Peter: Courage to Try Again.