Mark 14:69 Then after a little while the bystanders again said to Peter, “Certainly you are one of (Jesus’ followers); for you are a Galilean.” 71 But he began to curse, and he swore an oath, “I do not know this man you are talking about.” 72 At that moment the cock crowed for the second time. Then Peter remembered that Jesus had said to him, “Before the cock crows twice, you will deny me three times.” And he broke down and wept.
This passage is toward the end of the gospel of Mark. Jesus had been arrested and would soon be condemned to death. Peter, who was among the most favored of Jesus’ disciples, had promised Jesus he would never leave his side – but then he denies even knowing Jesus. This was perhaps a low point in the story of the apostle Peter. Two things strike me about this today:
First, we tend to put biblical characters on a pedestal of sorts. Stories like this one remind us these were real people, not gods or robots. They made mistakes like everyone else.
Second, we know that Peter’s story gets better going forward. Yes, he made a big mistake, but the Lord wasn’t done with him. By the grace of God, Peter overcame his failures to become a key leader in the early church.
I make mistakes all the time, no question about it. I expect the same is true of you. Today’s passage reminds me that God is in the business of picking people up off the ground when we fall. Failure does not have to be the last word. I hope this promise ministers to you today as it does me.
Lord, thank you for your grace. Use us for your glory, despite our flaws and shortcomings. We ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.