Scripture: Mark 14:66-72
Key verses: (71-72) But he 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.
Reflection: Peter dropped everything to follow Jesus. He was a fisherman when Jesus walked over and said, “Follow me.” An ordinary person. Like you and me. Peter journeyed with Jesus seeing incredible miracles, hearing parables and witnessing the grace of God. I cannot imagine what it must have been like to walk from town to town and debrief all they experienced or even to go off to a quiet place and be in silence with JESUS!
Peter was deeply connected to the one he called Messiah and yet Peter denied knowing Jesus — three times. I picture Peter being disgusted with himself as the words leave his mouth and wishing he could capture them and stuff them back inside. That was the first time. Maybe he was surprised by the second question. The words fall out of his mouth and he hates himself for not catching them before they are heard. Peter weeps in remorse and hopelessness, wishing he could turn back time. I can imagine that feeling. That is why I can see it so clearly. Can’t you?
The story does not end here. Our God is a God of Easter, Resurrection and New Life for Jesus, for Peter and for us. After the resurrection, Jesus appears to Peter and gives him three chances to boldly proclaim his love. He doesn’t shame Peter. Jesus offers him mercy and grace. Three times, Peter affirms his love for his Messiah. I can also imagine that moment.
Yes, I know it feels like fall today and we are far from the season of Easter but we are Easter people. We need to believe and remember God’s ability to redeem whatever or whoever, today. We do not have to wait for Easter. We think we can work everything out for ourselves but our mercy is not enough. We need the mercy and grace of God. Today, let us boldly proclaim our love for Jesus and live as Easter people each and every day.
Prayer: God of new life, transform our lives with your grace. Let us go forth in peace and begin this day with joy. In the name of your son we pray. Amen.
Author: Michelle Thomas-Bush
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].