Let’s begin with a poem called “And God Said If” that helps set the scene:

If you never felt pain,
Then how would you know that I’m a Healer?

If you never went through difficulty,
How would you know that I’m a Deliverer?

If you never had a trial,
How could you call yourself an overcomer?

If you never felt sadness,
How would you know that I’m a Comforter?

If you never made a mistake,
How would you know that I’m forgiving?

If you never were in trouble,
How would you know that I will come to your rescue?

If you never were broken,
Then how would you know that I can make you whole?

If you never had a problem,
How would you know that I can solve them?

If you never had any suffering,
Then how would you know what I went through?

If you never went through the fire,
Then how would you become pure?

If I gave you all things,
How would you appreciate them?

If I never corrected you,
How would you know that I love you?

If you had all power,
Then how would you learn to depend on me?

If your life was perfect,
Then what would you need me for?

Pause and consider that final line for a moment:

If your life was perfect,
Then what would you need me for?

This is a sermon about a failure so shocking that we still talk about it 2000 years later. There are really two parts to Peter’s story-his three-fold denial the night Jesus was arrested and how Christ forgave and restored him. The first part depends wholly on Peter, the second wholly on Jesus.

Peter was in charge of his own failure.
Christ took charge of restoring him.

Behind this story lies a wonderful, liberating, hope-filled truth: Failure is an event, not a destiny. This is good news because we all fail sooner or later, and if we are honest, we all fail over and over again. As Peter’s story abundantly proves, it’s not our initial failure that ruins us. It’s what happens next that matters.

Failure doesn’t mean you have blown everything. It means you have some hard lessons to learn.
It doesn’t mean you are a permanent loser. It means you aren’t as smart as you thought you were.
It doesn’t mean you should give up. It means you need the Lord to show you the next step.
It doesn’t mean that God has abandoned you. It means that God a better plan.

Only those who have greatly failed will truly appreciate this story. If you have only failed in small things, then you will not be deeply moved. But if you have known the shame of large failure, then listen up. This story is for you.

You can read the entire article here.

You can reach the author at ray@keepbelieving.com. Click here to sign up for the free weekly email sermon.