Suddenly, Jesus’ words flashed through Peter’s mind: “Before the rooster crows twice, you will deny three times that you even know me.” And he broke down and wept. Mark 14:72 (NLT)
My blog friend, Miss Sandy, from Quill Cottage reminded me today of a favorite old book—Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. If you are unfamiliar with this little book, it is great for kids but has noteworthy truths for adults, too. The bottom line for Alexander was just to take off for Australia. Wouldn’t we like to be able to do that some days? Life becomes so difficult that our preferred method of handling it is just to disappear and maybe it will all go away. I have been doing some reading for Lent and Peter’s story caught my attention this time. Maybe it is because I can identity with him after a tough week. I can only imagine Peter’s fear, defeat, and shame as he ran from the courtyard after hearing the cock crow and knowing he had denied his LORD three times. He had blown it…again. The pain overwhelms. Sorrow squeezes the heart and breaths are short and shallow. Life looks like it will never be the same again. He disappears into the night. And then, God steps in with His forgiveness and life. He knew what Peter was going to do—He even predicted it. This was a detour but not a roadblock. He knew the heart of Peter and even had great plans for him in the future. What a comfort for those of us who travel life’s paths and sometimes get detoured. It may by our own choice or not, but we need help. Our Savior never rebuffs a contrite heart. All we have to do is cry out for help and Jesus is there to pick us up, dust us off, give us a hug, and send us on our way. Some consequences may need to be dealt with but for God, nothing is impossible and His forgiveness is immediate. Like Peter, I can say with a grateful heart…thank you, Lord.