“Yes, Lord,” he said, “you know that I love you.”… (John 21:15).
In a stunning scene, Jesus reinstates Peter, communicating a simple yet profound truth that, “I believe in you.”
Have you ever been down a road you’d rather forget? Have you ever been so devastated by life or the consequences of a sin or someone else’s sin that you’ve thought, “Surely, this is it for me. There is no more Kingdom work for me to do like I’ve done before. I am a total failure.”
I’ve been there, believing those lies. I think it’s because shame was closer to my heart then grace. If we stay in environments long enough where we are surrounded more by shame then grace, the message of “I’m a failure” becomes an easy one to tell ourselves. Until we find freedom from those environments it will be very hard to experience the beauty of God’s grace for our lives.
But you see, Peter, on all accounts completely failed Jesus. I mean, He totally dropped the ball as he denies his rabbi three times signifying that he is cutting himself off from Jesus. To deny your rabbi in public three times meant that you wanted nothing to do with them and that you were disassociating yourself from them. This is why it’s so beautiful that Jesus comes to Peter and gives Him a second chance.
Maybe you’ve made a few mistakes along the way and you wonder how Jesus could love someone as sinful as you. I wonder that often. Yet, Jesus, in all of HIs grace says to Peter, “I believe in you.” Isn’t this a wonderful truth? That no matter what journey we’ve walked. No matter how hard it has been, there awaits a Savior who comes to us to remind us that, “I believe in you.” Peter repents, and turns away from HIs sinful decision made out of fear and Jesus gives Him even greater Kingdom work to do than before.
Don’t believe the lie that your life is over. That you’ve disappointed God and that He’s completely done with you. There is grace for sinners like you and me and God will use those who humble themselves and admit their own weaknesses and failings. There are no perfect people. There are messy people who have been redeemed, who are climbing their way, stumbling towards victory.
Lord, I am amazed at how you love sinners. You take our lives and in our humility and repentance, you restore and redeem. That’s just the kind of God you are. Thank you, Father, for loving me, a sinner and for seeing me first as your child. I love you, in Jesus name, Amen.