Posted by: pmarkrobb | April 10, 2023

a linger just a bit longer

Monday’s sun has risen for us just as surely as the Son rose on that ancient yesterday we just celebrated. Please allow me to linger just a bit longer in the Light and with the truth of the darkness into which He rose. Surely, death and resurrection were a fitting end to Jesus’ becoming one of us. In dying on the cross and walking out of the grave, He had done what He came to do. The work of redemption was finished — or so it seemed.

There is one particular appointment in my mind’s eye today. There were many for Jesus during the forty days He remained before returning to the Father, but I am particularly struck by one in my remaining after reading of the resurrection. There was a specific darkness into which Jesus arose — the internal aftermath of the denials of beloved Peter. We are more than familiar with the story (John 21:15-17), but I wonder if we can see it anew in the context of yesterday’s suggestion. What I saw this time in the account of Jesus’ deeply intentional questions was Him having a conversation with Peter’s darkness.

Apart from Peter himself, only Jesus knew the guilt and shame in his heart. Passionately, in front of everyone, and most importantly His friend and Savior, Peter declared he would die with Jesus before he’d ever deny Him. I can feel his heart and resolve swell in that moment on the Mount (of Olives). I believe it was fiercely genuine — as my own heart swells have repeatedly been in monumental moments. Of course we will be equal to walking a mile in His shoes! Of course we will not falter or cower! That is, until we do.

But Jesus knew, and He tenderly told the truth in the moment — “You will, my beloved;” I hear Him say. “And it will be worked together for your and My good.” And then, after breakfast on that particular day after resurrection, Jesus speaks into Peter’s darkness with the same question asked intentionally three times.

It was finished on the cross and in the moment Jesus walked out of the grave. But redemption’s work had, in many ways, only just begun. I see that clearly in Jesus’ asking intentionally three times. His impassioned and embattled disciple had experienced a temporal victory of the darkness, and Jesus chose to go to him as the Light his darkness could not overcome.

It would seem a far better ending that Peter would fall to His knees or into the arms of his Savior and receive the lavishly merciful redemption and restoration in Jesus’ question. But that’s not how it happened, and there was enough mercy in the Master for that too. But can we pause in this moment and see Jesus speaking into Peter’s darkness after rising again – and know confidently that He will do the same for us today too? Amazing love, how can it be!



  1. Thank you again this year for the depths of a spiritual gift you have provided us your readers. Praise our risen Lord!

  2. Thank you!

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