Observations from today’s readings and today’s S-WOD, Friday, 19 November 21:
John 18:27 – “Peter again denied it, and at once a rooster crowed.”
Remember Jesus had said to Peter, “‘Truly, I tell you, this very night, before the rooster crows, you will deny me three times.’ Peter said to him, ‘Even if I must die with you, I will not deny you!’” (Matthew 26:34, 35) Peter’s reaction after he denied Jesus is described in Mark 14:72: “And Peter remembered how Jesus had said to him, ‘Before the rooster crows twice, you will deny me three times.’ And he broke down and wept.”
Have you ever felt the guilt of failing Jesus? Remember, Jesus knows your weaknesses better than you do. Your failures are not a surprise to Him. When you are tested, it is not so that God can see the truth of your sinful heart, it is so you can see it and recognize your dependence on God’s grace. God’s will in your failures is to bring you to humble repentance, to draw you closer to Him, to sanctify you, to conform you to the image of His Son, and to prepare you for greater faithful service in love. His goal is not to condemn you but to complete you – “And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” (Philippians 1:6)
- 1 Thessalonians 5:23 — Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Failure is a time to humbly and trustfully draw closer to Jesus, not further away in pride, shame or fear. Judas denied Jesus, couldn’t bring Himself to repent and accept the forgiveness of God, and killed himself. Conversely, Peter repented, accepted forgiveness, and was used mightily by God. Paul, formerly Saul who had made a career of persecuting Christians, repented and went to his death boldly proclaiming Christ and glorifying Him. Have confidence in grace, and glorify God boldly.
“Cross” Fit S-WOD (Spiritual Workout of the Day) – 21 November 21: Walk confidently in God’s grace today, and strive to glorify Him in all you say and do.