Because We are Imperfect People & We Live in an Imperfect World, We Will Experience Failures in Life.
The night Jesus went to the cross, two of his closest friends experienced massive failures.
Judas, the Failure of Betrayal and Peter the failure of denial.
Both actually denied Jesus.
Judas rejected God’s Mercy and went and hung himself.
Peter accepted God’s Mercy and went on to the leader of the church.
We will learn about our failures and God’s Mercy by looking at Peter’s failure.
We will answer 3 Questions.
What Causes Personal Failure in Your Life?
Peter did three things that we all do that cause failure in our lives.
We will look at 3 things Peter did wrong and 3 things Peter did right.
Then we will see how Jesus responds.
Three Things We Do Wrong
1. WE OVERESTIMATE OUR STRENGTH
When you think that you are stronger than you really are, you think that you can handle more than you can handle and you thing you can resist temptation - that’s when you fall.
Peter’s failure begins in Matt 26.
Peter said he would not… but he did.
He denied even knowing Jesus.
A lot of businesses fail because they overestimate their strength.
A lot of battles have been lost because they over estimated their strength.
You think, I can handle it… its just a little office flirt...
NOTE: Never Say, I’d Never Do That
One of the reason we have so many failures is that we overestimate our strengths.
Non of us are exempt from failing.
The minute you think if could never happen to you is when you are open to failure.
Given the right situation, all of us are capable of any sin.
We also misuse our strengths.
We tend to guard our weaknesses, but often leave our strengths exposed and we don’t pay attention to temptations in those areas.
When we don’t pay attention, strengths become weaknesses.
An Unguarded Strength is a Double Weakness
The very thing you believe you are strong in… the are you believe you would never mess up in, is the area you are setting yourself up for failure.
Sometimes this can occur after a victory has been won.
You relax and them it hits you.
Peter had his biggest failure right after the Last Supper.
Jesus was tempted right after his baptism and God the Father Spoke from heaven…
Don’t Think that could never happen to me
2. WE FEAR THE DISAPPROVAL OF OTHERS
This is big.
It causes more problems in our lives than you can imagine.
You fear disapproval… you worry about what other people think.
When you fear disapproval, you will go along with things you know you should not.
Every time you make a decision based on what other people will think, you are sowing the seeds for failure in your life
This is one of the reasons that Peter failed.
Peter struggled with People Pleasing even after spending 3.5 years with Jesus.
He worries about what a young girl thinks and he denies even knowing Jesus.
How many times have you had the opportunity to admit you were a Christian at work or somewhere else and you said nothing because you were worried about what other people would think?
It happens all the time in many areas of our lives.
Peter followed him at a distance… that’s a problem.
Let me ask
Are You Following Jesus at a Distance?
You want to follow Jesus but you want to keep living the way you want to live...
The Bible says Peter was just sitting around waiting for something to happen.
Do you Ever Find Yourself Sitting Around… waiting to see what happens?
That’s a set up for failure.
Then Peter was worried about what people thought.
Whose Opinion Matters More to You than God’s?
You worry about what they think about what you say and do.
Have you Ever Asked Yourself… Why is the opinion of others so important to you?
… Why you would do something you know is wrong to please someone.
Socrates: The Unexamined Life Isn’t worth Living.
Reality is the Unexamined Life is a recipe for trouble.
The Parts of Your Life You are Afraid to Look at are the Parts of Your Life that Cause you the most Trouble
What is it that makes you afraid of someone’s disapproval?
Why will you do anything to prevent that disapproval?
There is always a Wound Behind the Fear of Disapproval
There is something that triggers that fear of disapproval from others in your mind… rejection… unmet need growing up… some hurt or trauma… a pain or injury.
The pain is so deep that it’s often hidden in you and you don’t even know why you are in pain.
This kind of Pain is always Related to Your Identity.
If you don’t know WHO you are as a man or woman in Christ, you will be maipulated by the disapproval f other people the rest of your life.
And you too will find yourself backing down when someone asks you of you are a Christian.
You won’t stand up for what you believe because you worry about what others think.
Peter over estimated his strength and fear the disapproval of others.
You may think:
I can handle this...
I can drink just one...
That won’t happen to me...
I can watch this kind of stuff and it won’t affect me...
I can go into this place and it won’t impact me…
Who are you kidding… When you over estimate your strengths and you fear disapproval, you will experience failure.
3. WE SPEAK WITHOUT THINKING
Our mouths move without our brains filtering what comes out.
I used to tell a friend that just because a thought popped into his brain, it did not need to come out of his mouth.
We don’t pause to consider the damage our words might do to someone… We just speak impulsively.
The reason we speak without thinking is we speak based on emotion.
When you talk, you may not even be thinking about what you are talking about.
You are not thinking and talking rationally.
You don’t ask, “Lord should I say this?”
People say, “I just say what I feel” like its a sign of courage.
It’s a sign of immaturity.
Little Children say what they feel.
Adults need to learn to control their mouths.
This is what happened to Peter.
Jesus has just been arrested… he is fearful and stressed.
He is in the crowd that’s come to see Jesus tortured when people start asking him who he is.
He cursed without even thinking about it.
Cursing is a Sign of Frustration