How fantastic must Peter have felt when he declared that Jesus was the Christ, the son of the Living God, and Jesus responded by calling him blessed, and promising to build the church on the rock of his faith.
And how devastated must he have been when Jesus later rebuked him, called him a stumbling block and actually said ďGet behind me, Satan!Ē
Even Jesusí closest disciples sometimes did brilliantly, and sometimes got it horrendously wrong. Peter gladly accepted Jesusí praise, but he also had to accept Jesusí rebuke and correction. We see him make the same journey after Jesusí resurrection when he had to face up to the consequences of denying his saviour at the moment of his greatest crisis.
We speak often about Godís love, but Godís love comes with correction and rebuke, just like the love of any good father. We know that we are totally loved, secure in that love, and so we should be able, like Peter, to receive correction when it is necessary. Sometimes we will do brilliantly, and sometimes we will get things horrendously wrong. It is part of Godís love towards us both to bless us, and to correct us.
The account of what happened between Peter and Jesus after Peterís denial reminds us that there is always a way back. If you feel like you have failed, or fallen or got something horrendously wrong, accept his correction, and accept the way back that he offers.