Failure Is An Event, Not A Person
"And Peter went out, and wept bitterly." Luke 22:62
I have made many commitment to the Lord, and I have gone forward in many an invitation following a preaching service. I have repented of my sins only to pick them back up at the back of the church. I have vowed to never sin again on Sunday only to be drawn back into the world on Monday. I have failed many times in my Christian life, and I have even repented of sin only to have the thought in my mind of when I would do it again. I am ashamed to admit this, but I truly understand the verse found in Romans 3:23 “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;”
I need no convincing that I am a sinner as I have fallen more times than I can remember. I would make commitments at summer camp, and I would do business with God. I would do my best to do what was right, but the school year would start, and I would soon forget the commitments I had made. Although I would forget that which I committed, my God never forgot my dedication and commitment to Him, and He would chastise me accordingly. I was never at peace inside because I was trying to run from that which fulfilled and truly satisfied me. I was too ignorant to realize it at the time that sin was truly only pleasurable for a short time, and that season always ended abruptly.
Peter, like me, vowed that he would not betray his Master. He looked the Savior in the eye and said he would go with Him to the death. He was appalled that he would even be considered to be the one to give up on the Friend who sticks closer than a brother. Despite his protests, he failed and he knew it the moment he heard the rooster crow. The prophetic words of the Savior haunted him as he rightly prophesied of what Peter would do. Peter was brokenhearted at his own betrayal, and he wept because he knew he betrayed the One he loved. Peter failed in his quest to not to betray his Lord and friend, but Peter was far from a failure.
Luke 22:31-32 starts this chapter of Simon Peter’s story, "And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat: But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren." The Lord prayed for Simon Peter as He knew that he would fail Him. He knew Satan desired to sift Him as wheat, and He knew that although Peter would fail in this instance, he was not a failure. God had a plan for Peter's life, much as He does for every one of us. Although we may fail in this Christian life, it does not mean we are failures. I can think of no better person to pray for you than our Intercessor the Lord Jesus Christ. I am grateful that I am not doomed by my failures, but I know there is victory and freedom in Jesus Christ. Peter went on to do great things for the work of God, and he was used mightily even after he failed so miserably.
Have you failed in your walk with God? Have you allowed yourself to be labelled by your failures? What is keeping you from confessing and forsaking your sins and walking again with God? God can only use those who have failed because all humankind has failed in one way or another. Peter is just one example of someone who failed but was not a failure. What will you allow God to do in your life today? There is victory in Jesus Christ and there is redemption in Him. May we not be defined by the failures in our lives, but may we find success in following Him.
Stay in the fight!