Continuing with our story of Jesus fixing breakfast on the shore for the disciples who have been fishing, we come to the well-known talk that Jesus has with Simon (John 21:15-19). Three times Jesus asks Simon, "Do you love me?" Three times Simon Peter answers, "Yes, Lord." Jesus instructs him to "feed my sheep."
Aside from the fact that these three questions parallel the triple denial of Jesus by Peter, what else might they signify? To me they show that although Peter failed Jesus miserably in his hour of need, God's call on Peter's life still remains. Peter's failure did not negate the call of God on his life. God has not given up on Peter.
Jesus then says to Peter here at the end of the gospel the same thing he said at the beginning, "Follow me." But now Peter knows what "follow me" entails - persecution, being an outcast, danger, trials and death.
Peter had already passed one small test since his denial and Jesus' resurrection: he fished on the other side of the boat when Jesus told him to. Now Jesus gives him a much bigger task: follow me and feed my sheep.
For reflection: My failure does not negate the call of God on my life.
Let us pray. Lord, I may not always be successful, but I want to be faithful. Don't let my failures keep me from trying to what you call me to do.
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I started this website and blog on May 1, 2012. I am a Catholic who has been in ministry for many years. I first developed what I would call a close relationship with Jesus in the early 1970s. Ever since then I have been praying with people for healing and other needs. It is because I have seen so many of these prayers answered that I am so bold as to offer to pray for you individually through this website and phone line.