Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Faith and Failure

Posted by Michael

People who have heard stories about Jesus and His disciples have probably heard the one about Peter denying Jesus during His crucifixion, and they have probably heard it several times. What we don’t always talk about is the earlier conversation between Jesus and Peter that put everything into motion. Jesus had just finished observing the Passover meal with his disciples, what we now call the Last Supper.  Jesus told the disciples that Satan had been demanding to have them so that he could “sift you like wheat” (Luke 22:31) (that’s another blog post to itself). Then Jesus told Peter that he was specifically praying for him, that when the dust cleared, his faith would not fail. That’s an amazing thought! Basically, Jesus was saying, “When you fail, I am praying that your faith won’t crumble”.  Jesus already knew that Peter was going to fail, but He didn’t want that failure to wreck Peter’s faith.

Faith is the stubborn belief that God is for me even when my physical eyes can’t see it, and faith can be fragile. Few things can rattle our faith as greatly as our own personal failures. Most times, when our faith begins to fracture, it isn’t because we doubt God. We doubt that God would love us. It's hard to believe that someone who has failed the ways we have could be worthy of love. Jesus’ prayer for Peter was that in the midst of his doubt, he would remember that God’s love for him was bigger than the biggest betrayal. Perhaps the most scandalous truth imaginable is that it is impossible to fail our way out of God’s love. God is bigger than our worst days and most shameful secrets, and His desire is for us to embrace his great love for us. So, if you fail today (of if you are like me, when you fail), I pray that your faith that God is for you will not be broken, and that you will find hope in a God that is bigger than your failures. 

1 comment:

  1. Fab post!

    I love that Jesus loves us despite our failures. I also agree that faith can be fragile - but it doesn't have to stay that way. There are a number of times in my life where I've literally stepped out in what seems like just the tiniest bit of faith and watched God work in ways that can only be Him. Those times have strengthened my faith so that as new things come up I think back and remember what He's done before.

    Failing is a funny thing - it shows us who we really trust and it gives us this amazing opportunity to press into God. When I fail I'm reminded of where my identity should be. I'm the daughter of a King. I'm loved by the Creator of the universe. I am not perfect, and I'm not expected to be.

    I may fail, but I am not a failure.