If you’ve failed, I’ve got great news. You’re still a candidate for God to use because God loves to use the failures. In the New Testament, we see what I call the most successful failure in the Bible, and that was a guy named Peter.
If you know anything about Peter, Peter loved to run his mouth and it often got him in trouble. He was the guy that bragged about his faithfulness to Jesus. The night before Jesus went to the cross Peter said to Jesus:
“Hey, you know these other guys. There’s a bunch of losers. They’re not going to be there for You, but I got your back, man. When everyone else denies You, I’m going to be there.”
Well, Jesus saw through this and knew what would really happen. He said,
“Peter, I’ve got bad news for you. Tonight you are going to deny me, not once, but three times, and when you do, you will hear the rooster crow.”
And so, Peter’s like, “No, you don’t understand. I’m with You.”
Well, later that night after Jesus was arrested what happens? Peter denies Jesus 3 times. Let’s look at his last denial. Luke 22:60-62 says this:
“Peter replied, ‘Man, I don’t know what you’re talking about!’ Just as he was speaking, the rooster crowed. The Lord turned and looked straight at Peter…And (Peter) went outside and wept bitterly.”
Now, I don’t know for sure what was going through his mind, but let me tell you what would have gone through my mind. I would have been thinking:
“I just screwed up big time. Jesus called me a rock, and I’m more like Silly Putty. He believed in me, and I let Him down. I’ve destroyed our relationship. My credibility is blown. I’ll never be called on again. If He does have unconditional love, I’ve pushed it to the limit. I’ve messed up. He will never trust me ever again. I’ve failed too big.”
What’s humbling to me about Peter is that Jesus came back to him, forgave him, and immediately used him to do, perhaps, the greatest thing that happened in the New Testament besides the resurrection, and that was help birth the New Testament church.