71But Peter began to curse, and he swore an oath, ‘I do not know this man you are talking about.’ 72At 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.
I find this to be one of the most haunting passages in the holy scriptures. Knowing full well that Jesus was right, and that he was wrong, Peter comes face to face with his brokenness and his humanity.
We have all stood there with Peter. In certain ways we have committed ourselves to the Lord Jesus, but then the circumstances of the hour break our resolve. We make promises to pray, but we just can’t seem to find the time. We make promises to help others, but the comfort of our own bubble is just too much to overcome. Like Peter, I have broken down and wept when I have faced my darkest hour.
Peter, however, is a dynamic character. He is one of the leaders of the early church and tradition says that he was martyred for his faith in the Lord Jesus. One night of sorrow does not define a lifetime. Our momentary lapses and failures do not fully characterize our relationship with God. Step back and take stock of your whole life with Christ. From there, you will see with greater clarity.
The Rev. Jimmy Abbott