Jesus chooses failures…Jesus chooses you!
Well, according to Jon Bloom of Desiring God Ministries, He does 🙂
As Bloom wrote in Desiring God’s September 2007 newsletter (which you can read in its entirety at the preceding link, and I would encourage you to do so),
Peter’s failure did not define him. It was a horrible, humbling stumble along the path of following Jesus. When Jesus died on the cross he completely paid for the sin of Peter’s denial. “Not guilty” was the final word for Peter. He knew he did not deserve acquittal. But Jesus had settled Peter’s account with the Father and gave him guiltlessness as a free gift of love. He was not Peter “The Denier” but Peter “The Forgiven.”One of Peter’s good friends later wrote, “For we all stumble in many ways” (James 3:2). This is very true. When Jesus chose us to be his disciples, he knew our future failures as sure as he knew Peter’s. We may be surprised by our own depravity, but Jesus isn’t. We may be tempted to say, “That’s not the real me.” But it is. Facing and admitting our failures is one way Jesus teaches us what the gospel is. Our failures show us what we really are: great sinners. But that’s not what Jesus wants us to focus on. He wants us to look to the cross and allow our failures show us what Jesus is: a great Savior.
Looking to the cross and seeing Jesus for who He is, and stopping looking at myself and seeing myself for the failure I am, is not something I do easily.
Confession time – I’m almost totally focused on myself. And almost not at all focused on Christ.
This, of course, could be part and parcel of Christ working out His will in my life, and there are numerous times and numerous things I can point to that indicate just that.
There are many more things that point to me being a hypocrite, totally in the flesh and given over to sin.
That point to me being a failure as a Christian.
Yet, as Mr. Bloom points out above, one of Jesus’s disciples said in Scripture “we all stumble in many ways.”
Jesus chose a man who denied he even knew Him as the rock His church would be built on. A very flawed, very human, man who had his share of failures and more.
It’s kinda like building a pro football franchise around a steady, dependable running back who tells the ownership (and makes several public appearances for the team) he wanted to be a part of their team, then turns around when questioned by the media and denies he wants to be a part of the franchise at all – then gets called out for it when sports talk radio plays his “I love this team and want to be a part of it” statement over and over and over.
And the owner STILL moves heaven and earth to sign the guy, to build the team’s future around him.
Jesus KNEW Peter would diss him – and still chose him to be the church’s ‘franchise player’ and STUCK with him when things went bad.
For whatever reason, He chooses us – warts, sins and all. And while He doesn’t want us to willfully sin, nor be stuck in our sins, He understands that we are dust, that we are full of sin – and He wants to not only rescue us from sin, but to use us.
And He wants us to focus on Him, and not on ourselves, even as He is trying to make us like Himself instead of leaving us to ‘be ourselves’.
Peter failed, big time. How many people, if you denied you knew them or disrespected them, would give you a second chance? And forget about what you said?
Jesus gives you a second chance, and more, and puts what you said and did in the past, as far as the east is from the west.
We should remember that more often and cling to it, and strive towards becoming like Jesus. I know I should.