Failure Is NOT Fatal . . . IF – Part 2

Brooklyn Museum - The Third Denial of Peter. J...

The Third Denial of Peter - Jesus' Look of Reproach by James Tissot

Failure Is NOT Fatal IF . . . We remember that God’s love and forgiveness are not dependent upon our success.

No matter how you have failed, no matter what sin you have allowed into your life, the Savior who died for you still loves you.

He loved you and died for you when you were His enemy. Why would He love you less now? Your failure doesn’t change his love.

The story of Christianity is the story of failed men and women who found new futures through the forgiveness of Christ.

In Luke 22:61 we find a single sentence of explosive power: “The Lord turned and looked at Peter.” What kind of look did Jesus give to Peter? We do not know, but we do know Peter broke down afterwards.

He went out and wept bitterly.

It is to Peter’s credit that all that the Lord had to do was look at him to bring him to the place of recognition of what he had done.

That is the beginning of repentance.

No matter how effective the look of Jesus, it would have been wasted on Peter if Peter had not been looking at Jesus.

But Peter was looking at Jesus.

Jesus had predicted a turning point for Peter back in Luke 22:32: “But I have prayed for you, Simon [Peter], that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.”

This was that turning point, for it was at that point that verse 61 tells us, “ . . . Peter remembered the word of the Lord, how He had said to him, ‘Before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times.'”

Jesus knew Peter would fail. He knew Peter was not as strong as he thought he was. Still, Jesus loved Peter and prayed for him.

Jesus also knows us, loves us, and prays for us.

I am going to include the next passage of Scripture as if it were a poem, because it is so beautiful:

What, then, shall we say in response to this?

If God is for us, who can be against us?

He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all–
how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?

Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen?

It is God who justifies.
Who is he that condemns?

Christ Jesus, who died–
more than that, who was raised to life–
is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?

Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?

As it is written:
“For your sake we face death all day long;
we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”

No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.

For I am convinced that
neither death nor life,
neither angels nor demons,
neither the present nor the future,
nor any powers,
neither height nor depth,
nor anything else in all creation,
will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 8:31-39

Failure Is NOT Fatal IF… We remember that God’s love and forgiveness are not dependent upon our success.

_________________

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13 thoughts on “Failure Is NOT Fatal . . . IF – Part 2

  1. katharinetrauger says:

    Thank you, Debby, for this comment! You are right: It’s not about us. I almost forgot that old motto, but it is so appropriate, here.
    After all, if God justifies us and Jesus died for us, rose again, and ever lives to pray for us–what can anyone say?

  2. Ruth Bailey says:

    Oh, Katharine, how wonderful to hear this again! I’ve heard it put like this also: “There is nothing you can do to make God love you more, and there is nothing you can do to make God love you less.” Not that this gives us a license to sin, it’s just that God’s love is not dependent on us at all!

  3. Karen says:

    This is absolutely breath taking. Thank you for the reminder. Praise Him for His glances at us. Yes, we must be looking AT him to see it.

  4. Maria Tatham says:

    Good series, Katharine!

    I like the way you posted the passage from Romans. It separates each part of Paul’s inspired teaching so that it can be grasped as it builds. This helps attention and comprehension, especially because sometimes when we’ve read a passage many times, we can’t help but skim.

    Your style is much like what you did with this passage. You give us smaller bits so that we get what you’re saying before moving to the next bit (thought). Thoughts build naturally. This increases writer and reader success.

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