“But he replied, ‘Lord, I am ready to go with you to prison and to death…’ Luke 22:23. ‘The Lord turned and looked straight at Peter. Then Peter remembered the word the Lord had spoken to him: ‘…you will disown me.’ And he went outside and wept bitterly…’ Luke 22:61-62. ‘Peter, however, got up and ran to the tomb…he went away, wondering to himself what had happened.” Luke 24:12.
One way that Peter is frequently described by scholars is prideful. Time after time he puffed himself up and in pride acted and reacted. He was in the inner circle and could sense the rising of the kingdom of Jesus. He saw great things ahead, not understanding the reality of suffering in the very near future. He spoke of loyalties and sacrifices on behalf of Jesus, but failed terribly when faced with its reality. Peter, like us, talked a big game before the kickoff. The scene is heartbreaking…Peter aware of his failure… his weakness…his pride. He locked eyes with Jesus and at that instant the prideful became humble… the Savior became the sacrifice. Did Peter turn and walk away to avoid seeing the hurt in his friend’s eyes? With his head held low and feeling sick to him stomach where did he go? How can one get away from the reality of themselves? Can you imagine how thankful and hopeful he was to hear that Jesus was alive? He immediately ran to the tomb feeling life again…another chance…a plea for forgiveness…an opportunity to make things right. But once again, nothing…empty…left with dashed hopes. Little did he know all things would be restored the following week and he would be sharing breakfast with Jesus. Not only would they eat together but Christ would exalt Peter as the rock on which He would build the church. The grace of God was bestowed upon Peter once he was made humbled by his circumstances.
God will not leave us in our seasons of humbling one minute beyond the purpose being fulfilled. Many times we are unaware of where pride resides in our hearts, but under God’s hand we will be shown. Any time we are in a humbling season, anxiety is our companion. There is much spiritual work done in the heart of the humbled, and thankfully it is only a season. Like Peter, God in due time will restore us, strengthen us and exalt us in our God-directed purposes. And who knows, we might even find ourselves having breakfast with Jesus.
“Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you….And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. To him be the power for ever and ever. Amen.” 1 Peter 5:6-11.
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