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. And he said unto him, Lord, I am ready to go with thee, both into prison, and to death. And he said, I tell thee, Peter, the cock shall not crow this day, before that thou shalt thrice deny that thou knowest me.Luke 22:31-34
And the Lord turned, and looked upon Peter. And Peter remembered the word of the Lord, how he had said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. And Peter went out, and wept bitterly.Luke 22:61-62
It is at times when we are at our lowest that God is working more than ever. Peter was pretty sure of himself when he said he would follow Jesus anywhere, but his heart was about to be revealed. We are not as strong as we think we are. Our strength should come from belonging to Jesus Christ. Our power should be in the power of the Holy Spirit. When we try to serve Christ in our own strength, we fail miserably. Yet, Jesus prays for us. He ever lives to make intercession for us. He uses the prayers of the saints for us and does mighty things in response to those prayers. He teaches us a valuable lesson, not to trust in ourselves anymore.
But we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God which raiseth the dead:2 Corinthians 1:9
The secret to living a crucified life is to stop trusting in ourselves. Easy to say, but harder to walk out on a consistent basis. We need the Lord’s grace, that divine influence on the heart with an outward manifestation in our lives. We need to look at the life of Christ and have the mind of Christ. He never trusted in himself. That’s why He had the victory over the world. He did the will of the Father. We can do the will of the Father as well. Spend much time in Bible reading, Bible memorization, prayer, worship, singing, praising, and glorifying God in all that you do. Manifest God’s glory by asking Him to order your steps in His perfect will for your life.
Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk. And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength. And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God.Acts 3:6-8
The same Peter that denied Christ and ran away like a coward later became a bold witness for Jesus Christ. It didn’t happen by accident. Peter was among the 120 that were baptized with the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost. We need the Holy Spirit to lead us, guide us and teach us. Once we are filled with the Spirit, we still need to always exercise our will to do the will of the Father, which is love for God and love for others.
God can use our failures. It teaches us how to stop relying on our own thoughts and opinions. We should spend much time in the Word and in prayer before we attempt to labor for the Lord. We need to be filled with HIM. His ways, His doings, His guidance, His example. As we spend much time with the Lord, a mysterious transformation happens where we begin to do the works of God. We are God’s workmanship in Christ Jesus, when we let Him work in us to do and to will of HIS good pleasure.
Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.Philippians 3:13-14
We need to learn from our mistakes and failures. God has an investment in you. He’s poured so much time and effort into you that to give up would be a crime against God. Just because you fail once, don’t let your heart be filled with sorrow. The godly thing to do is to get up, go back out there and succeed the next time by the grace of God. Some of the men and women we count as heroes of faith had their share of failures. God didn’t throw them away after one sin and He won’t throw you away either. Repent of your sin and failures and resolve to do better next time. God is looking for steady growth from you, but let it be His work in you. Respond to His guidance and His Spirit, just like His Son, Jesus!
This walk on earth is like a marathon. It’s a long race. Just because you struggle at first, doesn’t mean you will always struggle. Learn to run the race with patience, doing the will of God from the heart. As you obey, you will steadily see the glory of God in your life. The more you decrease in yourself, the more you can increase in Christ. Be content in the Lord and trust His working in you. It’s His job to see that you are perfected. Be morally perfect and sin not! As you walk in holiness before the Lord, He can equip you with all the tools you need to succeed. God bless you as you seek to glorify God in all that you do.