Second Chance

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How many time have you regretted something that you have done or failed to do?  Don’t you wish that you could have a “do over” so that you could erase  your mistake?  You aren’t alone.  Even Peter, the one who first proclaimed that Jesus was the Christ, needed a second chance to make up for his lack of courage under duress.  In today’s gospel passage from John, Peter gets his chance.

After Jesus had revealed himself to his disciples and eaten breakfast with them, 
he said to Simon Peter,
“Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?”
Simon Peter answered him, “Yes, Lord, you know that I love you.”
Jesus said to him, “Feed my lambs.”
He then said to Simon Peter a second time,
“Simon, son of John, do you love me?”
Simon Peter answered him, “Yes, Lord, you know that I love you.” 
He said to him, “Tend my sheep.”
He said to him the third time,
“Simon, son of John, do you love me?”
Peter was distressed that he had said to him a third time,
“Do you love me?” and he said to him,
“Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.”
Jesus said to him, “Feed my sheep.

Did you notice that Jesus asked Peter three times, “Do you love me?”  Sound familiar? Jesus gave Peter the ultimate gift, the chance to get it right.  Of course, getting it right didn’t mean that Peter wouldn’t avoid the consequences he would have suffered had he not denied Jesus three times.  In fact, his love for Jesus eventually led to his own crucifixion.

The Lord gives all of us opportunities to conquer our fears and be courageous in living a life of faith.  We must simply answer as Peter did.

Do we love him?

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