Jesus, this King with a crown yet-to-come, one fashioned of thorns, rode upon a lowly, unblemished burden-bearer into town, amid an enthusiastic crowd waving palms. *
He turned the tables and cleansed the temple. *
He preached in parables. *
He and the disciples dined at the home of Simon the leper and Jesus received the precious gift of perfumed oil lovingly poured upon His head. *
He dined on the Passover seder with the disciples. *
In the chill of the evening, as Jesus and the disciples stroll to the Mount of Olives, Jesus prepares them for the coming ordeal and says, “All of you will be made to stumble because of Me this night.”
Peter stops dead in his tracks and declares, “Even if everyone else stumbles, I will never stumble!”
Laying His hand firmly on Peter’s shoulder, Jesus says, “Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.”
Peter, grasping Jesus’ hand and falling at His feet, cries out, “Even if I have to die with You, I will not deny You!”
“I tell you the truth, Peter—this very night, before the rooster crows, you will deny three times that you even know Me.”
Continuing on to the garden, Peter follows Jesus so closely He can almost detect Peter’s breath.
But Jesus needs time to be alone with His Father in prayer. As He kneels in intense prayer, He sweats great drops of blood.
And as He prays, Judas appears with a large entourage, armed with swords and clubs. The soldiers arrest Jesus and lead Him away. And Peter follows at a distance.
As the soldiers stop in Caiaphas’ courtyard, Peter slips over to join the servants warming themselves by the fire in the courtyard.
Three rapid-fire accusations unfold against Peter, quickly followed by three denials.
The saddest moment of Peter’s life occurs: the Lord turns and looks at him. Those prophetic words echo through Peter’s mind and stab him in the heart: “Before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times.”
How chilling that crow must have sounded. His heart pounding in grief, he got up and left, weeping bitterly.
But was that the end of the crowing? Doesn’t a rooster crow each morning?
Wouldn’t that cock-a-doodle-doo pierce Peter’s heart each dawn as the enemy’s reminder of his failure?
But wait! What about resurrection morn? Didn’t the cock crow that daybreak also?
Wouldn’t Jesus’ words have comforted him: “I prayed for you, that your faith will not fail. When you have been restored, strengthen your brothers.”
Did Peter continue to hear a daily crowing as the enemy’s opposition to his heart’s desire to serve the Lord or as the Lord’s resurrection reveille to rise up out of despair and serve Him?
Does the enemy crow in your ears, cackling reminders of your past? Or how unworthy you are? Or that you’re a failure?
Or do you hear that triumphant shout of resurrection morn? Telling you that…
* you have victory over your past
* the Lord gives you strength for each task
* you are blessed beyond measure
* you are loved more than you can comprehend
* you are a delight to your heavenly Father’s heart
* you can do all things through Christ?
Does each dawn’s awakening encourage you with fresh mercies?
Which morning crow are you listening to?
Blessings of encouragement…Lynn