2012-01-05 - Our Scars
Mark 14:70 But again he denied it. And after a little while the bystanders were again saying to Peter, Surely you are one of them, for you are a Galilean too. 71 But he began to curse and swear, I do not know this man you are talking about! 72 Immediately a rooster crowed a second time. And Peter remembered how Jesus had made the remark to him, Before a rooster crows twice, you will deny Me three times. And he began to weep (NASB)
Peter had made the statement that he would die with Jesus before denying his Lord at the Last Supper. Jesus warned Peter that the enemy was going to test Peter - to sift Peter as wheat. Here Peter is found outside the building where Jesus is before a mock trial where He will be condemned to die. Peter is quiet literally standing in the enemy camp and is recognized. Jesus' warning to Peter that Peter would indeed deny Jesus comes to pass. The Disciple denies furiously that knows Jesus knowing that to not be convincing would place himself on a cross on Golgotha.
When Peter hears the rooster crow his failure is bitterly clear in his mind. The word weep is better translated, to sob uncontrollably. Most of will admit we have failed the Lord at times. Sometimes that failure takes a long time to play out with all kinds of clearly marked exits that we could take and we don't. Be clear. Sin is never anything but deliberate. It is a choice we make. Sin also leaves scars not all of which are visible. Peter put himself into a difficult position trying to stay close to Jesus. His humanity got the better of him when he feared for his mortal life.
But Jesus knew that this would happen before time itself was set into motion, before Adam and Eve were created. He knows our weaknesses and our failures too. Still, He chose us. He accepted our sincere heart asking for forgiveness and gave us His salvation when we could do nothing for ourselves. Does failure have a purpose? I believe it does. There have been a few times when someone told me of trouble they are having with a sin. I know their struggle because I have been right where they stand. It is times like this when our scars, be they physical, emotional or mental, become symbols of hope for others. Peter was promised by Christ that Peter would be restored to fellowship with his Master. When we have been restored we can offer that hope to someone struggling with the thoughts that they will never be useful to the Lord again - a crippling lie of the enemy.
Paul said that he had learned that nothing can separate us from the love of Christ (Rom 8:38). That is not a license to do whatever we please, but it is sure comfort against all manner of situations and troubles we encounter. Our scars can be reminders of how much Christ has done for us.
Lord Jesus - Keep us mindful of our frailties and Your strength and love. Amen.